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This week a federal jury will decide if Norfolk Treasurer Anthony Burfoot is guilty of taking more than $450,000 in cash and gifts from local real-estate developers in exchange for political favors.
Burfoot, the former Norfolk vice mayor and a former city councilman, is accused of taking bribes in the form of cash, free home renovations, a Mercedes sedan, new kitchen appliances and a $25,000 payment to the mother of his children from about 2005 to 2011, according to documents filed in the Eastern District Court of Virginia.
In exchange, prosecutors say he voted to authorize city fund expenditures and ordinances to benefit the developers, including the promise to get city council votes for the approval of a strip club in Norfolk.
On Jan. 7 Burfoot was indicted on one count of conspiracy to commit honest-services wire fraud; one count of honest-services wire fraud; one count of extortion under color of official rights; one count of Hobbs Act extortion; and four counts of extortion.
He is scheduled to appear in the Eastern District Court of Virginia on Monday where prosecutors plan to present evidence using videos of past city council meetings, bank and phone records and the testimonies of witnesses “who will detial their own corrupt dealings,” with Burfoot, court documents state.
One Norfolk business man, Ronald W. Boone, 67, pleaded guilty on Sept. 16 in federal court to bribing Burfoot and other high-ranking officials.
Boone pleaded guilty to providing Burfoot with dinners, cash and free use of a beach house between March 2004 and December 2015. In exchange, Burfoot took official actions and promised future official actions that benefited Boone and his business interests.