Georgia County Commissioner Charged with Attempted Extortion, Bribery and False Statements
WASHINGTON – A county commissioner in Sumter County, Ga., was indicted today for his alleged role in soliciting illicit payments in exchange for his official efforts to secure government contracts for a private contractor, Assistant Attorney General Lanny A. Breuer of the Justice Department’s Criminal Division and U.S. Attorney for the Middle District of Georgia Michael J. Moore announced.
Al J. Hurley, 54, is charged in a three-count indictment filed in the Middle District of Georgia with attempted extortion, bribery and false statements. According to the indictment, Hurley was an elected member of the five-member Sumter County Board of Commissioners in Sumter County. As the primary governing body for the county, the Board of Commissioners presided over a variety of official matters, including the bidding process for and award of various county contracts.
The indictment alleges that from September to December 2011, Hurley, in his capacity as a county commissioner, solicited and agreed to accept cash payments, including $5,000 on Oct. 23, 2011, and $15,000 on Dec. 19, 2011, from a private contractor, in exchange for Hurley’s use of official action and influence to facilitate the award of county contracting work to the contractor. In addition, according to the indictment, on Dec. 19, 2011, Hurley lied to special agents of the FBI when he falsely claimed that he never solicited money from the contractor.
If convicted of attempted extortion, Hurley faces 20 years in prison and a $250,000 fine. On the bribery charge, Hurley faces 10 years in prison and a $250,000 fine. The false statement charge carries a maximum five year prison sentence and an additional $250,000 fine.
This case is being prosecuted by Trial Attorney Eric G. Olshan of the Criminal Division’s Public Integrity Section and Assistant U.S. Attorney Crawford L. Seals of the Middle District of Georgia. This case was investigated by the FBI.