SACRAMENTO - Former Sacramento City Council Operations Manager Belisa Serna-Mayorga was sentenced to nine months in jail, five years probation and ordered to pay $19,043.29 in restitution to the city on Monday for using a city credit card for personal use.
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An internal audit in June 2012 found Serna-Mayorga did not file the proper paperwork for charges totaling more than $19,000 on the city credit card. She then admitted those charges were for personal use, Sacramento County District Attorney's Office spokesperson Shelly Orio said.
Serna-Mayorga was also accused of forging accounting documents. Orio said the documents she turned in to justify her purchases had a forged signature of the mayor's chief of staff, Kunal Merchant.
Serna-Mayorga was subsequently arrested in December.
Serna-Mayorga's attorney, Bill Portonova, said his client will appeal for an alternative sentence, such as house arrest or work furloughs, in order to avoid spending any time in jail.
If her request is denied, she would have to report to jail sometime around April 15, according to Portonova's office.
Mayor Kevin Johnson sent the following statement:
Lisa Serna-Mayorga has been a close friend of mine for many years. She made some very real mistakes and is now being held accountable for them. She is taking responsibility for her actions and I am grateful that she can move forward in a positive and productive way. My thoughts and prayers are with her and her family during this time.