A federal judge has postponed an arraignment for former New Orleans Mayor Ray Nagin on charges he accepted bribes and gratuities from city contractors in exchange for helping them secure millions of dollars in work for the city.
Nagin was scheduled to be arraigned Jan. 31. On Wednesday, however, U.S. District Judge Helen Berrigan moved Nagin's arraignment to Feb. 20. Berrigan's order doesn't give a reason for the delay or say if it was requested by Nagin's attorney or federal prosecutors.
Former New Orleans mayor Ray Nagin has been indicted on 21 counts of bribery and other corruption charges by a federal grand jury. When he became the city's mayor in 2002, Nagin, a former cable TV executive, promised to revive New Orleans' economy, and its trust in the city's government.
The lawyer for a businessman linked to a corruption probe of former New Orleans Mayor Ray Nagin said his client expects to plead guilty in federal court to conspiring to bribe a former New Orleans official.
Randy Smith, lawyer for Frank Fradella, wouldn't name the ex-official. A two-count bill of information filed Tuesday against Fradella identifies the official only as "public official A" and that he served the city from May 2002 to May 2010 — a period that coincides with Nagin's tenure.
I'm Allison Keyes, and this is TELL ME MORE, from NPR News. Michel Martin is away.
Five years ago today, New Orleans was bracing itself for what would become one of the worst natural disasters in U.S. history. Some were injured during the storm, but many more died in the hours and in the days afterward waiting for help to arrive. We'll talk with the much criticized and much praised former mayor of New Orleans in a minute. That, of course, is Ray Nagin.