Quantcast
Published On: Sat, Feb 2nd, 2019

Atlanta Deputy Chief of Staff, Evelyn Taylor-Parks sentenced for accepting bribes

Evelyn Katrina Taylor-Parks has been sentenced to federal prison for conspiring to accept bribe payments while she served as the City of Atlanta’s Deputy Chief of Staff to the Mayor.

“Let Ms. Taylor-Parks’ case be a warning to any and all public officials who abuse their power for personal gain, or for the benefit of their associates to the detriment of the taxpayers: we will thoroughly and appropriately investigate such criminal breaches of fiduciary duty and bring them to justice irrespective of the dollar amount of the ill-gotten gain,” said U.S. Attorney Byung J. “BJay” Pak.

“Parks abused the trust placed in her by the people of the city of Atlanta,” said Chris Hacker, Special Agent in Charge of FBI Atlanta. “The FBI and its partners in law enforcement will not tolerate those who choose to try to influence established and proper government procedures. We would urge anyone who witnesses similar activity by public officials to contact the FBI.”

Photo/Оксана

“In order to regain trust in our local government, we will continue to investigate and recommend criminal charges against those who engage in corrupt governmental practices,” said Thomas J. Holloman, Special Agent in Charge, IRS- Criminal Investigation. “The sentence handed down today should deter those who seek to peddle political influence and access for personal financial gain while in a public service position.”

According to U.S. Attorney Pak, the charges, and other information presented in court: From approximately January 2010 to May 2018, Parks served as the Deputy Chief of Staff to the Mayor of the City of Atlanta. As the Deputy Chief of Staff, Parks had various responsibilities, including managing core City of Atlanta operations, coordinating with the Mayor and the executive staff to execute the administration’s policies, and facilitating the procurement process.

In her position, Parks signed an annual Financial Disclosure Statement attesting that she was not self-employed or employed by any business or entity other than the City of Atlanta, and that she had not received more than $5,000 in annual income from any source other than the City of Atlanta. Parks executed the Financial Disclosure Statements under penalty of perjury in 2011, 2012, and 2013, stating she was not employed outside the City of Atlanta.

A vendor, who was an executive with a firm in Atlanta during Parks’ tenure as the Deputy Chief of Staff, sought work through his businesses with the City of Atlanta, and the City of Atlanta ultimately awarded one project to the vendor’s firm worth $99,999.

From late-2011 to mid-2013, Parks met privately with the vendor on multiple occasions. During these meetings, Parks and the vendor discussed various topics, including the vendor’s desire to obtain work with the City of Atlanta, the idea of sole-source contracting, and the process by which the vendor could obtain a sole-source contract with the City of Atlanta. At the time of these meetings, the vendor was actively seeking projects and work with Atlanta, and at times was performing work for the City of Atlanta.

The vendor paid Parks thousands of dollars and paid for various services on Parks’ behalf, while seeking work with the City of Atlanta. In return for these bribe payments, Parks knew that the vendor wanted her to use her position and power as the Mayor’s Deputy Chief of Staff to assist the vendor with the City of Atlanta’s contracting and procurement process, and to assist the vendor in the future when needed.

In exchange for accepting money from the vendor:

1. Parks met regularly with the vendor, took the vendor’s calls, and responded to the vendor’s emails.

2. She organized and arranged meetings between the vendor and high-ranking employees within the City of Atlanta and with a member of the City Council.

3. Based on the high-level nature of her position, Parks knew that when she contacted City of Atlanta employees, on behalf of the vendor, those employees would feel compelled to comply with her requests.

4. Parks provided the vendor with information and advice regarding the processes and procedures to obtain a sole-source contract with the City of Atlanta.

5. She assisted the vendor in obtaining a City Council Resolution allowing the City of Atlanta to negotiate a sole-source contract with the vendor that was possibly worth millions of dollars. Parks believed that the vendor intended to use the resolution in an attempt to obtain government contracts outside of Atlanta.

6. She also facilitated and expedited the process for the vendor to receive payment for work the vendor had completed for the City of Atlanta.

In total, Parks admitted to taking bribe payments from the vendor on 7 or 8 occasions, where each bribe was between $1,500 and $2,000.  Parks also received from the vendor a Louis Vuitton handbag, a cruise to Mexico, and a trip to Chicago. Parks never disclosed her ongoing financial relationship with the vendor and/or the vendor’s firm on her Financial Disclosure Statements to the City Atlanta.  As a result, from January to July 2013, the City of Atlanta issued payments of $19,900, $11,750, $15,000, $17,200, and $36,149 to the vendor’s firm.

 

About the Author

- The generic Dispatch designation, used primarily for press releases or syndicated content, but may be used for guest author requesting a generic nomenclature

Tags

Leave a comment

XHTML: You can use these html tags: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>



Recent Posts

Categories

Archives

At the Movies