Hubbard faces sentencing Thursday

LOS ANGELES — Former Newport-Mesa Unified schools chief Jeffrey Hubbard is scheduled to be sentenced Thursday following his two felony convictions for misappropriation of public funds.

Hubbard, 55, faces five years in prison for his January conviction for crimes stemming from his time as superintendent at Beverly Hills Unified School District.

The crimes, which involve unapproved payments to a subordinate, took place prior to his employment with Newport-Mesa Unified.

During the trial, prosecutors said Hubbard made illegal payments to a subordinate with whom he had a "special relationship."

Former Facilities Director Karen Anne Christiansen, 53, his co-defendant in the case and recipient of the payments, was convicted of four felony counts of conflict-of-interest charges and sentenced to four years and four months in prison and $2 million in restitution.

Hubbard was acquitted of a third charge for giving an alleged illegal pay raise to another subordinate, who was never charged with any wrongdoing.

The day after Hubbard was found guilty, the Newport-Mesa Unified school board fired him. Retired Supt. Rob Barbot was chosen as interim superintendent Feb. 1 and will head a national search for Hubbard's permanent replacement.

Barbot will begin the job Thursday. His contract lasts through July 31.

Hubbard vowed to appeal his conviction. He has 60 days from the day of his conviction to file an appeal.

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