Wendell Walters, black senior official with NYC Dept. of Housing Preservation & Department, facing conspiracy, bribery and racketeering charges after being arrested by FBI agents.
|Wendell Walters Arrested on Bribery Charges (NY Post)|
Wendell Walters, the assistant commissioner for new construction in the New York City Department of Housing Preservation and Development, was arrested by FBI agents Thursday morning on a variety of corruption charges. Walters, who is black, faces conspiracy, bribery, and racketeering charges for alleged misconduct related to his official business for the city, the New York Post said.
Walters is scheduled to be arraigned later today in Brooklyn federal court. Six other people connected with the bribery scheme were also arrested this morning. Oh what a tangled web we weave….Greed will come back to bite you every time.
UPDATE#1: Wendell Walters and real estate developers Stevenson Dunn, Lee Hymowitz, Esq., Michael Freeman, Esq., Sergio Benitez, Robert Morales and Angel Villalona will be arraigned this afternoon on a 26-count indictment before United States Magistrate Judge Robert M. Levy, at the U.S. Courthouse in Brooklyn. The case has been assigned to US District Judge Nina Gershon, according to a press release issued by the FBI.
The indictment and search warrant application for Walters’ residence and HPD office allege that beginning in 2002, Walters accepted approximately $600,000 in bribes from general contractors and real estate developers in exchange for awarding them HPD contracts. On multiple occasions, Walters allegedly summoned a general contractor, identified as John Doe #1 in the indictment, to various locations around the city, including a golf driving range in the Bronx, where Walters would hand John Doe #1 a slip of paper with the amount—usually “250,” signifying $250,000—that Walters was demanding. In subsequent meetings, John Doe #1 would make cash payments, often in excess of $25,000 at a time, to Walters, hiding the money in golf ball boxes, overnight mail envelopes and coffee cups. During the same time period that he was paying these bribes, John Doe #1 was awarded the general contracts for the following HPD projects: the Lexington Avenue, Watkins Avenue Cluster, Bedford-Stuyvesant and Cooper- Decatur Cluster projects in Brooklyn, the Alexander Avenue and Crotona Park Cluster projects in the Bronx, and the Guy Brewer North Homes in Queens. The value of these general contracts was often in excess of $10 million. Additionally, real estate developer Dunn, a friend of Walters since high school, admitted in a consensually-recorded conversation that Walters, whom Dunn described as “greedy,” demanded $75,000 from Dunn and actually received $25,000.
Read the entire FBI press release: http://www.fbi.gov/newyork/press-releases/2011/assistant-commissioner-of-nyc-department-of-housing-preservation-and-development-indicted-for-racketeering-bribery-and-extortion