Weeks into 4th term, Allentown mayor faces corruption trial

Written by The Associated Press | Jan 14, 2018 8:18 AM

(AP Photo: Matt Rourke)

Allentown Mayor Ed Pawlowski talks to the media outside his home in Allentown.

(Allentown) -- Two months after persuading voters to give him a fourth term, Allentown's indicted mayor is taking his case to a jury.

Democrat Ed Pawlowski stands trial this week on federal corruption charges, with jury selection beginning Tuesday in Philadelphia.

Prosecutors say the mayor ran a pay-to-play scheme, telling vendors he expected campaign contributions in return for city contracts. He faces a 54-count indictment that includes accusations of fraud, bribery, attempted extortion and lying to the FBI.

The most serious charges carry a maximum prison term of 20 years each.

The mayor says he's innocent. His attorney, Jack McMahon, says prosecutors are peddling a "false narrative" about Pawlowski.

Two co-defendants were charged with Pawlowski. One of them has pleaded guilty, but the other will stand trial with the mayor.

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