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Another Mount Vernon Mayor Indicted

Mayor of Mount Vernon, Alabama Indicted for False Invoice Scheme Against Birmingham Water Works Board

(image: WPMI) Mt. Vernon Mayor Terry L. Williams indicted

The press and social media have been abuzz about every detail, every update in the corruption case of the city of Mount Vernon Mayor Richard W. Thomas. But it seems he is not the only mayor from a municipality named Mount Vernon who is under indictment. This Mount Vernon is a town in Mobile County, Alabama.

A federal grand jury has indicted Terry L. Williams, the mayor of Mt. Vernon, and Jerry Jones of Maylene, Ala, on wire fraud and conspiracy charges. The 21-count indictment alleges that between December 2014 and January 2016 Williams and Jones conspired to create false invoices and submit them for payment to the Birmingham Water Works Board (BWWB). The invoices sent were for work purportedly done on the Shades Mountain Filter Plant project. The indictments were announced by US Attorney Jay Town and Johnnie Sharp, FBI Special Agent in Charge.

A 21-count indictment filed in U.S. District Court charges JERRY JONES, 55, of Maylene, and TERRY WILLIAMS, 54, of Mt. Vernon, with conspiring between December 2014 and January 2016 to create false invoices and submitting them for payment to the Birmingham Water Works Board (BWWB) for work purportedly performed on the Shades Mountain Filter Plant project. 

“These defendants demonstrated a callous disregard for the citizens of Birmingham by stealing money meant to improve the Birmingham Water Works Board’s operations,” Town said.  “Their breach of the special trust given to them makes their thievery even more intolerable.  We appreciate the investigative work of the FBI, and our partnership with the Alabama Attorney General’s Office, in this investigation.”

According to the indictment, Jerry Jones was an Arcadis Vice-President and the Principal-in-Charge for Arcadis on the Shades Mountain Filter Plant project.  Arcadis U.S., Inc., was an engineering and consulting firm with offices located throughout the United States, including Birmingham, Alabama.  Arcadis entered into contracts with the BWWB to perform work on several projects, including design and bid phase services on a project involving improvements to the Shades Mountain Filter Plant.

Terry Williams owned a company in Mobile, Alabama, called Global Systems International, LLC (GSI).  Arcadis entered into sub-contracts with GSI for work on certain BWWB projects for Arcadis.  Terry Williams hired an individual to perform that work. Arcadis paid GSI by direct deposit into GSI’s bank account based on invoices submitted to Arcadis.

According to the indictment, BWWB paid Arcadis a total amount of $255,300.10, of that amount GSI received $232,091.00. 

As part of the conspiracy, Williams shared the proceeds of the false invoice scheme with Jones.

The maximum penalty for the conspiracy charge is five years in prison and a $250,000 fine.  The maximum penalty for wire fraud is 20 years in prison and a $250,000 fine. 

Mayor Richard W. Thomas, mayor of the city of Mount Vernon, New York, was arrested and arraigned Monday, March 12, 2018 on criminal charges including grand larceny as part of a corruption probe by the New York State Attorney General’s Office into campaign finance irregularities.

Mayor Richard Thomas who is running for re-election also rejected a final plea offer – on May 17th – that would have allowed him to avoid incarceration if he pleaded to a misdemeanor and one of the six felony charges he is facing and stepped down as mayor. He also could have had the felony conviction expunged if he successfully completed a period of probation.

Mayor Richard Thomas’s Corporation Counsel Lawrence Porcari was arrested and indicted for abusing his position as a public official by engaging in a scheme that defrauded the Mount Vernon Board of Water Supply of $365,000 to pay the personal legal expenses of the Mount Vernon Mayor Richard Thomas and a public relations firm. Porcari returns to court on June 6th.

The jury selection for Mayor Richard Thomas’s corruption case will begin July 8th, 13 days after the hotly contested Democratic Primary.

Another Mount Vernon, another indicted Mayor!

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About AJ Woodson (2279 Articles)
AJ Woodson is the Editor-In-Chief of Black Westchester and Co-Owner of Urban Soul Media Group, the parent company. AJ is a Father, Brother, Author, Writer, Journalism Fellow, Rapper, Radio Personality, Hip-Hop Historian and A Freelance Journalist whose byline has appeared in several print publications and online sites including The Source, Vibe, the Village Voice, Upscale, Sonicnet.com, Launch.com, Rolling Out Newspaper, Spiritual Minded Magazine and several others.
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