Friday, January 22, 2010

Corrupt Florida Politicians

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Suspended Deerfield Beach City Commissioner Sylvia Poitier was sentenced to one year of probation, community service and a $1000 fine for falsifying records.  She was gound guilty on four misdemeanor charges of falsifying documents after a Broward judge denied her defense attorney’s motion to acquit Poitier and reverse a jury’s guilty verdict reached Nov. 16.

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Former South Daytona Mayor Ron Clifton and former special magistrate Jerome Mitchell were sentenced to two and three years in federal prison, respectively, this afternoon, after a federal judge heard testimony that shed light on the bribery scandal that sunk both men and ended their public careers. U.S. District Judge Mary Scrivens showed no leniency toward Mitchell, giving him them the high end of the sentence recommended in the sentencing guidelines.

Former Deerfield Beach Commissioner Steve Gonot was convicted  of stealing campaign funds, falsifying his campaign treasurer's report and official misconduct.  The three-woman, three-man jury took just under an hour before returning the guilty verdicts, following a one-week trial.

* Commissioner Mary McCarty U.S. District Judge Donald Middlebrooks sentenced former County Commissioner Mary McCarty to three-and-a-half years in prison for misusing her office and illegally benefiting by $300,000. She also was fined $100,000.

Former County Commissioner Warren Newell was sentenced to five years for lining his pockets through secret payments and benefits. He is still in the Palm Beach County Main Jail.

Former County Commissioner Tony Masilotti, began serving a five-year sentence in August 2007 for engaging in secret land deals that netted him nearly $10 million in illicit profits…Investigators uncovered a six-year conspiracy … persistently used his power to advance land deals that enriched him and his family.

Former West Palm Beach City Commissioner Ray Liberti was released from prison in May after serving 18 months. Prosecutors said he used his influence to cite a West Palm Beach nightclub and massage parlor for code violations to intimidate the owners into selling their businesses at a below-market price to buyers he had chosen. In return, the buyers gave Liberti an expensive watch and paid him $66,000, most of it in cash delivered in a shaving kit.

Former West Palm Beach Commissioner Jim Exline was released in February after serving a 10-month prison sentence. Exline failed to report on his tax return a $50,000 payment from a developer who prosecutors said wanted the commissioner's help securing city approvals for a restaurant.

Broward County Commissioner Josephus Eggelletion’s, 20-year career in politics ended in tears and disgrace as the Broward commissioner became the first county official to plead guilty in a wide-ranging federal corruption investigation and resigned. Eggelletion, who admitted taking part in a plan to launder what he thought was dirty money, faces up to five years in prison and $250,000 in fines.

Two suspended Levy County commissioners were found guilty Friday evening of conspiracy and soliciting bribes in return for approval of what they believed was a new development project. The jury deliberated for about five hours at the federal courthouse in Gainesville before arriving at the decision against William Samuel "Sammy" Yearty, 63, and Robert Anthony "Tony" Parker, 49.

Two Dixie County men were convicted as part of a federal undercover investigation into corruption by public officials. Former Cross City police chief and suspended town council member Marcellus Dawson and the city's public works superintendent, Johnny Miller Greene, were found guilty as charged. Both men were convicted of conspiracy and of accepting bribes. Greene was also convicted of lying to the FBI about the $600 he was convicted of taking.

Willie Dewey "Billy" Keen Jr. a former Dixie County zoning official, was sentenced to 6 1/2 years in federal prison and three years of probation for his convictions on charges of conspiracy, soliciting bribes and two counts of lying to federal agents.

Two former Dixie county commissioners, John Lee "Big John" Driggers, 61, and Alton James Land, 68, are scheduled to be sentenced on similar charges in January. During an August trial, witnesses detailed how the men accepted money in exchange for promising favorable decisions by the Dixie County Commission on specific development issues.

Former Senate President W.D. Childers, who served in the Senate from 1970 to 2000 walked out of a prison work-release center Wednesday, ending nearly three years of confinement on a bribery conviction.

Suspended St. Johns County Commission Chairman Tom Manuel pleaded guilty and is awaiting sentencing in U.S. District Court on an official corruption charge of accepting $60,000 in bribes

A former Miami City Commissioner, Humberto E. Hernandez, pleaded guilty to a Federal charge of conspiracy to commit bank, wire and mail fraud.

Former Tamarac Mayor Says developer offered him a $200,000 cash payoff if he would agree to remove his wife from the mayor's race.


  1. Are we sure there shouldn't be any Charlotte County Government people listed in the Wall of Shame?

  2. See for criminal charges filed in Daytona Beach and not acted on by State Attorney Bill McCollum. And he want's to be Governor?

  3. Hope your checking into the Washington County Florida FBI investigation with County workers and elected officials.

  4. Hi Bett,

    My brother lives in St. Augustine and wanted to ask you a question about Tom Manuel.

    Do you know the definition of "entrapment"?

    If Tom Manuel wasn't anti-development, none of this would have happened.

  5. Surfside Florida needs a major investigation to clean and root out pervasive corruption in town government, misuse of public positions for personal gain, abuse of authority to attack citizens for criticizing waste and fraud,....Surfside politicians are trampling the town charter, and the US constitution. Please see it for yourself --- please help --- please help save a nice community from inside fraud.

  6. Florida lets real criminals out loose and tries to set traps for poor people trying to make an honest living shame on you broward county. they let a well off foot ball player off the hook after killing a mother but they take people down for no apparent reason. the law is the law either way you bend it but Florida bends it towards the people that are well off and well known.

  7. Search and find: Who Controls Surfside download and print the original documents before the POWER squashes your ability to ever see them. Ethics, conflict of interest, corruption, transparency, accountability, Florida, municipalities, honor, whatever your interest is, look and learn.