A probe into corruption at Atlanta City Hall has resulted in a guilty plea by the city’s former chief procurement officer.
According to the U.S. Attorney’s Office, Adam L. Smith has pleaded guilty to accepting bribes from an unnamed vendor who received millions in city contracts.
“From at least 2015 to January 2017, Smith met privately with Vendor on multiple occasions, frequently at local restaurants,” the U.S. Attorney’s Office said. “During these meetings, Smith and Vendor discussed Atlanta procurement projects, bids, and solicitations. Often at the time of these meetings, Vendor was actively seeking contracts, projects, and work with Atlanta.
“After most of these meetings, Vendor and Smith met in the restaurant’s bathroom, where Vendor paid Smith approximately $1,000 in cash. In return for the bribe payments, Vendor expected Smith to use his position and power as Atlanta’s Chief Procurement Officer to assist Vendor with contracting/procurement with Atlanta and to furnish Vendor with future benefits and favors when needed.”
The U.S. Attorney’s office said Smith met with the vendor on a regular basis and counseled him regarding the city’s purchasing process. He never disclosed his financial relationship with the vendor to the city, the U.S. Attorney’s Office said.
Smith received more than $30,000 from the vendor. He will be sentenced in January.
The corruption investigation has also uncovered contracts awarded to Elvin R. Mitchell Jr., who pleaded guilty to paying $1 million in bribes to unnamed city of Atlanta officials. The U.S. Attorney’s Office also says that another contractor, Charles P. Richards Jr. paid more than $185,000 to receive government contracts.
The corruption investigation was revealed in January of this year when Mitchell was arraigned on conspiratorial bribery and money laundering charges.