The Detroit News reports some colorful details from the indictment of Detroit pension fund trustee Paul Stewart. The feds allege that local legitimate businessman Jim Pappas paid Stewart $20,000 in bribes with casino chips.
Detroit News: "During the course of the conspiracy, the principal of Company R gave a $5,000 casino chip as a bribe to Paul Stewart in order to influence and reward Paul Stewart in his votes as a trustee of the Police and Fire Retirement System," the indictment reads.
"On three different occasions during the course of the conspiracy, the principal of Company R gave $5,000 casino chips to Trustee B as bribes in order to influence and reward Trustee R (sic) in his votes as a trustee of the Police and Fire Retirement System."
According to the indictment the owner of Company R owned a hotel, contributed to the Kilpatrick Civic Fund, and attempted to profit from a toxic waste well in Romulus. Three things that perfectly match the description of Atheneum Hotel founder Jim Pappas.
According to the cases against former City Councilwoman Monica Conyers and her aide Sam Riddle, Conyers pressured Pappas into hiring Riddle as a consultant. Around the same time, her husband John Conyers reversed his previous opposition and endorsed the well project.
In response to the new allegations, Pappas' lawyer offered a non-denial denial in the form of the dictionary definition of an indictment.
"They are merely allegations and nothing more," Papas' attorney Christopher Andreoff said about the bribery claims. "They have not been proven to be true."
Elsewhere in the indictment, Stewart and fellow pension trustee Marty Bandemer are alleged to have fired a consultant because he "had not been generous in paying for drinks and entertainment for them." That totally sounds on the up and up.
It's like DeNiro said in "Casino": This is the end result of all the bright lights, and the comp trips, and all the champagne, and free hotel suites, and all the broads and all the booze. It's all been arranged just for us to get your money.