(October 1, 2007)--Federal authorities unsealed indictments Monday
alleging a bribery and extortion scheme within Dallas City Hall
involving state Representative Terri Hodge, numerous past and
present city officials, and a prominent real estate developer.
The indictments charge 14 defendants with illegal dealings with
contractors who were building publicly funded affordable-housing
developments in Dallas. A 15th defendant was indicted on
allegations of tax fraud and a 16th was indicted on a count of
US Attorney Richard Roper announced the indictments, which
stem from an FBI investigation that became public more than two
years ago when agents raided city offices.
The 31-count main indictment names 14 defendants.
Among the key figures are Hodge, a Democrat from Dallas; former Mayor Pro Tem and one-time mayoral candidate Donald W. Hill and his wife; and real-estate developer Brian L. Potashnik and his wife. Jack
Potashnik, Brian Potashnik's father, is named in a separate indictment that alleges tax fraud.
At the heart of the indictments is the allegation that public officials accepted bribes and kickbacks to help Potashnik's company, Southwest Housing, receive construction contracts.
Former City Council member James Fantroy is named in another
indictment alleging he embezzled at least $5,000 from Paul Quinn
College, a historically black college that moved from Waco to the Bishop College campus in Dallas in the 1990s.