In an unprecedented instance of a Louisiana politician being accused of corruption, former New Orleans Mayor Ray Nagin has been charged by a federal grand jury with 21 counts of corruption as foreseen by David Simon in his documentary Treme! Tell us more about the details, not-quite-a-newspaper-anymore Times-Picayune! (If you’d like, you can try to sing this to “The Twelve Days of Christmas”). Charges include:
six counts of bribery, one count of conspiracy, one count of money laundering, nine counts of deprivation of honest services through wire fraud and four counts of filing false tax returns, alleging that while in office, Nagin took cash bribes and gifts from two city contractors. Nagin’s long-expected indictment arrived more than two and a half years after he left City Hall and relocated to the Dallas area.
The two contractors have already pleaded guilty to bribing the mayor in a separate case, although in that case he was identified only as “Public Official A,” and are expected to testify against Nagin, who will now be known as “Public Official Fuckin’ A.”
There are probably a whole lot of important background details that are necessary for a proper understanding of all the nuances of this case, and if you look around you can probably find them on some sort of “News” website. Instead, we will just leave you with Randy Newman’s evocation of a true master of Louisiana graft, Mr. Huey P. Long.