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Former San Diego Mayor Admits to Money Laundering

O'Connor's lawyer attributes addiction to recent health problems.

Former Mayor Maureen O'Connor (City of San Diego)
Former Mayor Maureen O'Connor (City of San Diego)
San Diego's former mayor Maureen O'Connor admitted Thursday to squandering more than $2 million of charity funds because of a personal gambling addiction.

O'Connor, who served as mayor of San Diego from 1986 - 1992, admitted in federal court to embezzling money from the R.P. Foundation, a charitable organization founded by her late husband and Jack-In-The-Box founder Robert Peterson.

According to tax documents, O'Connor served as a trustee for the R.P. Foundation.

O'Connor agreed with the government to defer prosecution for two years while she attempts to repay the debt.

According to NBC San Diego, O'Connor's lawyer blamed her behavior on a gambling addiction that consumed her life and dwindled her entire personal estate.

Her attorney said his client "won and lost more than $1 billion in gambling winnings over a nine-year period of playing video poker in Las Vegas, Atlantic City and San Diego" and also suggested growing health problems,  including a brain tumor, are responsible for her gambling addiction.

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