El Monte Transit Village in more trouble

For many, a massive, billion-dollar development plan for the El Monte Transit Village was always a little bit far-fetched.

But ever since the president of the development company pegged to build the center was arrested on fraud allegations, the proposal has been lost on a growing number of people.

Just last week, city officials considered canning $2.5 million in federal dollars for a green building within the village, because the fraud investigation made it difficult for developers to meet certain conditions, according to reporter Rebecca Kimitch.

That’s in addition to $40 million in state grants that have already been lost as a result of Titan Development President John Leung’s June arrest.

El Monte police took Leung and another Titan executive into custody on suspicion of fraud, embezzlement, and theft. The pair were released and no charges have been filed against them, but the probe has been turned over to the District Attorney’s office.

The entire scandal is doing serious damage to the already shaky project.

Still, city officials are doing what they can to keep their dreams for a transit-oriented, destination spot — and the $2.5 million federal grants — alive.

“We can’t afford to lose what we have going,” Councilwoman Emily Ishigaki said.