APRIL 07, 2010
A city commissioner with a long history of criminal behavior is the latest of several public officials to get convicted in a notorious south
The latest elected official to go down in
Salesman had previously been suspended twice after being charged with unrelated federal crimes and was separately charged with drunken driving and speeding. Last spring Salesman, a naturalized U.S. citizen from Jamaica, was convicted of a firearms charge for waving his gun in a grocery store during a disagreement with a customer.
He was one of three elected officials busted in this latest corruption scheme. The other two—a county commissioner and a school board member—reached plea agreements with federal prosecutors to avoid lengthy jail sentences but Salesman gambled with a jury and faces six decades in jail. The other two got sentences of 2 ½ to 3 years.
Their scheme is simply the latest of many public corruption scandals in a fraud-infested county run by crooked officials. Among the recent cases are a county commissioner who pleaded guilty to bribery and money laundering, a four-term mayor awaiting trial for bribery and a city commissioner charged with grand theft, and falsifying public records.
A few years ago Broward’s elected sheriff, a one-time Democratic state senator, went to jail for tax evasion and mail fraud conspiracy involving money and other favors that he illegally took from vendors who did business with his county office, which has 6,300 employees and an annual budget of $700 million.
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