News

Former Allentown official charged with fraud in FBI probe

Written by The Associated Press | Dec 22, 2015 4:41 AM
allentown.jpg

Photo by Lindsay Lazarski/Keystone Crossroads

(Philadelphia) -- A high-ranking former official in Allentown has been charged with conspiracy to commit fraud as part of an FBI probe of government contracting in Pennsylvania's third-largest city. 

Former finance director Garret Strathearn of Sea Girt, New Jersey has been charged, becoming the highest-ranking official snared in the investigation. 

The charges involve a city contract for the collection of delinquent real estate taxes.

Court documents allege an elected city official seeking statewide office instructed Strathearn to manipulate the bidding process to favor a campaign donor.

They do not name the official, but Allentown Mayor Ed Pawlowski ran for U.S. Senate this year.

Pawlowski has not been charged. 

Strathearn is the third person charged. His lawyer did not return a phone call seeking comment on the charges.  

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