Thursday, October 21, 2004

Detroit Council Woman Indicted on 28 Counts

A few weeks after the controversy surrounding the City Council's supporting vote of establishing an "African Town" in Detroit, the Council is back in the spotlight again, but this time the bright light is focused on one individual: Councilwoman Kay Everett.

Everett, who was indicted on 28 charges that include fraud, bribery, and extortion, is accused of taking and commanding more than $150,000 from Frank Vallecorsa - owner of American International, Inc. and a main contractor with Detroit - in exchange for votes by Everett. In an article today in The Detroit News, it is reported that Everett contends that the payments from Vallecorsa, whose company has received $70 million in city contracts since 1990, were loans and that she had every intention of paying the money back. FBI wire taps, which secretely caught Everett talking about the Vallecorsa contracts, are said to disprove this defense. In addition, the FBI contends that if Everett did plan on paying the money back, she should have reported it as additional income on her tax returns, which she allegedly did not.

Vallecorsa has not been charged with any wrongdoing and is cooperating with authorities. Everett proclaims her innocence and will remain on the Council during the upcoming trial. If convicted, Everett could face 20 years in prison.

The full Detroit News article referenced above can be viewed at: