Nagin is accused of accepting bribes from city contractors Frank Fradella, of Home Solutions of America and Home Solutions Restoration of Louisiana, and Rodney Williams, of Three Fold Constultants, who were recently convicted of bribing "Public Official A" — Nagin, as the federal government officially acknowledged today — in exchange for millions in city contracts. Nagin is also charged with receiving bribes from city contractors Mark St. Pierre and Aaron Bennett, both convicted of bribing other public officials, and a movie theater owner identified only as "Businessman A."
Fradella pleaded guilty to paying Nagin $50,000 in 2008 after his company had been awarded more than $4 million in construction work at Louis Armstrong International Airport and sidewalk repair in the French Quarter. Fradella allegedly funneled the money to Nagin through a trust fund controlled by Michael McGrath, then Home Solutions of America's chairman. Fradella also admitted to providing free granite inventory to Stone Age, LLC, a company owned by Nagin and his sons, Jeremy and Jarin.
(More after the jump)
Download the complete 25-page indictment United States of America v. C. Ray Nagin a/k/a "Mayor Nagin":
"I personally witnessed him at arm’s length, literally two or three weeks away up in Baton Rouge, two weeks after the storm. He just collapsed onto the ground and leaned up against the wall and said, ‘I did not sign up for this shit.’ And he said it again. ‘I did not sign up for this stuff.’ And I’m thinking, wait a minute, you’re the mayor. You absolutely signed up for whatever comes. But that was his attitude. It was all about him."
Former New Orleans mayor Ray Nagin was indicted this morning by a federal grand jury on 21 counts of corruption, including conspiracy, wire fraud, money laundering and federal tax evasion.
The indictment had been widely expected since businessmen Frank Fradella and Rodney Williams both pleaded guilty to paying off someone described in court documents as "Public Official A" for favorable treatment by the city. "Public Official A" was widely known to be Nagin.
Earlier this week, federal prosecutors had attempted to reach a plea deal with the former mayor, sources told Gambit, but Nagin had turned down the deal.Nagin Indictment Updates
Read the federal indictment against former New Orleans mayor Ray Nagin
Your souvenir copy, available for download.
by Kevin Allman
Ray Nagin indicted
Former mayor of New Orleans faces 21 corruption counts. The maximum sentence is several lifetimes.
by Charles Maldonado
U.S. Attorney Dana Boente's statement on the Nagin indictment
Boente's office on today's indictment.
by Charles Maldonado
Oh, happy day
I rejoice for the reckoning that I pray will come. But mostly I rejoice in the hope that Nagin’s demise will bring a healing, a closure, to our beloved city and its deeply wounded people.
by Clancy DuBos
Gambit TV: Stephanie Grace on Informed Sources discussing Ray Nagin indictment
Talking the 21 counts.
Jim Letten today announced his resignation as the U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Louisiana, effective on Tuesday, Dec. 11. The resignation will bring to a conclusion Letten's 11-year term in office, making him the longest-serving U.S. Attorney in the country. Letten will remain employed by the office for a "brief time," he said, to aid in the transition.
U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder announced in a press release that Dana Boente, First Assistant U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia, will be appointed as interim U.S. Attorney in New Orleans.
"The decision was ultimately my own," Letten said. "It is, I believe, the best course of action under the circumstances."
(More after the jump)
I owe Ray Nagin an apology. All this time I’ve been saying how clueless and feckless the former mayor is. Little did I know that was all an act. Turns out he’s as sharp as Frank Fradella and Greg Meffert.
While I’m apologizing to Nagin, I should also thank U.S. Attorney Jim Letten and the Justice Department for finally letting us all know just how cunning Nagin really is. I’m sure Nagin will want to thank them as well, considering how his reputation as a moron was, um, etched in stone until now.
For some reason, Nagin was silent this week when the feds disclosed, via a bill of information and plea deal, that he and Fradella masterminded a scheme to channel millions of federally funded city contracts to Fradella’s companies in exchange for thousands of dollars in cash to Nagin and tons of granite to Stone Age LLC, the Nagin family countertop company.
And to think, we all thought Nagin was some dumbass who didn’t even know who was paying for his trips to Hawaii and Jamaica. I gotta admit, he had me fooled. Guess all those cable TV shows he hosted before he ran for office sharpened his acting skills — and hanging around with high-flying Mensa types like Meffert and Fradella convinced him of the wisdom of keeping his own genius under wraps.
Another well-kept secret was Nagin’s virtuosity as a businessman. True, he sold himself to voters as just that when he ran for mayor in 2002, but Hurricane Katrina and its aftermath seemed to give the lie to that. Well, now we know he was just proving his chops as a master of understatement, hiding his moneymaking wizardry behind a carefully crafted façade of insouciant narcissism and smug incompetence.
Man, this guy is good.
Now that the feds are officially investigating former Mayor Ray Nagin, the most popular water-cooler conversation starter in town is guessing when he’ll be indicted and on what counts. The Times-Picayune outlined three potential problem areas for Nagin, to which I would add a fourth. And that covers just what’s in the public domain.
The TP noted in its first story about the grand jury investigation that the feds are looking into “three parallel tracks” against Nagin, who campaigned as a crusading reformer in 2002. According to the newspaper, one track involves city tech vendors who provided Nagin with luxury travel and home maintenance; another concerns the Nagin family’s countertop business and its exclusive deal with Home Depot; and a third involves suspicions that the countertop biz got free equipment and materials from city vendors.
Add to that list the City Hall email scandal. Computer records of Nagin’s schedule and emails disappeared — right after WWL-TV asked for them in a public records request. It is a federal crime to tamper with public computers, and if the tampering is done to conceal a crime, we’re talking obstruction of justice.
The stink of corruption was already on Nagin even before he left office. The feds indicted former city tech chief Greg Meffert while Nagin was still mayor. Meffert ultimately pleaded guilty to conspiracy and tax fraud. He has yet to be sentenced, but he did testify against his old partner, former City Hall vendor Mark St. Pierre, who got 17-and-a-half years after the feds nailed him on 53 counts of bribery, conspiracy and wire fraud. Another former City Hall tech chief, Anthony Jones, pleaded guilty to bribery and has been cooperating with the feds.
The Albert Ledner-designed, mid-century modern residence was built in 1962. It has 4 bedrooms and 3 baths, as well as a pool (and a pretty sweet kitchen). Known as the "Ashtray House," it also has beaucoup gold glass ashtrays embedded along its roofline.
The point? Wasteful as well as very bad use of tax payer money for truly…
So, what's your point?
HumidCity will do everything it can to assist. If there is something we can do…
Throw another party in the city with the highest poverty rate in…
Can you say it's The Beatles without John?
Or can it be Miami Vice…
an excellent movie! my review - http://www.neauxreelidea.com/2013/04/revie…
The road to Hell is paved in unbought stuffed dogs.
Long how many more billions we spend to prevent the FBI's definition of terrorism versus…
Your Typical "Short-Sighted Mean Spirited, Long Term Pain" Comment is why New…
Boy what a mean spirited article downing some one else's hard work. I am surprised…
I have been exploring for a slight for any high excellence articles or…