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San Ramon Officer Accused In Drug Probe Appears In Court

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SAN RAMON (CBS 5) – The third police officer charged in a widening police scandal in Contra Costa County made his first court appearance Friday.

38-year-old Louis Lombardi of the San Ramon Police Department appeared before judge Nancy Davis Stark just after 1:30 Friday afternoon.

The charges Lombardi is accused of include grand theft, possession of stolen property, felony possession of an SKS rifle, felony embezzlement, receiving stolen property and conspiracy.

Bail for Lombardi is set at $500,000.

Lombardi was an officer attached to CNET; a drug task force in Contra Costa County. His CNET commander, Norman Wielsch, was arrested in February. Wielsch and his friend Christopher Butler, a private investigator and former Antioch cop, are accused of stealing confiscated drugs and reselling them.

Officer Stephen Tanabe of the Danville Police Department was arrested in March, accused of taking part in so-called “Dirty DUI” stings with Butler. Prosecutors say Tanabe was involved in scams to get drivers drunk and then have on-duty officers arrest them once they started driving.

Prosecutor Jun Hernandez asked the judge for an even higher bail. That decision will be discussed at the next hearing on Friday, May 13th.

(Copyright 2011 by CBS San Francisco. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

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