A former principal of Saugus High School has been charged with perjury and conflict of interest involving a student exchange program he helped set up with a school in China, the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office announced Monday.
William Bolde, 65, is set to be arraigned Jan. 12 in a downtown Los Angeles courtroom on the two felony counts.
Bolde helped to set up a student exchange program with a high school in Gaoxin, China, along with creating a nonprofit organization to administer the program, according to the District Attorney’s Office, which alleges that he had a conflict of interest because he was still principal at the high school while he had an employment agreement with the nonprofit group.
He is also accused of lying on disclosure forms.
“Those who break the law by putting their own best interest before the people they are supposed to serve will be held accountable for their actions,” District Attorney George Gascon said in a statement announcing the charges.
Bolde — who spent 14 years as the principal at Saugus High School — surrendered Saturday morning at the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department’s Santa Clarita Valley station and was subsequently released, the Santa Clarita Valley Signal reported.
“Bill was never interviewed by law enforcement, although he was more than willing to do so,” Bolde’s attorney, David D. Diamond, said in a statement obtained by the newspaper. “This is all connected to a frivolous lawsuit filed by others in an attempt to cover up their own wrongdoing. My client has served the Santa Clarita community with distinction, and he would never do anything to discredit his integrity, his family or his relationship with God.”
The case stems from an investigation by the District Attorney’s Bureau of Investigation’s Public Integrity Unit.