Former Consultant For Clarksville Department Of Electricity Found Guilty Of Honest Services Mail And Wire Fraud
Two Co-defendants Previously Pleaded Guilty
Tommy L. Walton II, 39, of Huntersville, North Carolina, was found guilty late yesterday by a federal jury on nine counts of honest services mail fraud and seven counts of honest services wire fraud after a week-long trial, announced Jerry E. Martin, U.S. Attorney for the Middle District of Tennessee. The jury also recommended a monetary judgment against Walton in the amount of $95,211.38.
U.S. Attorney Jerry Martin stated, “Corrupt practices by public officials and those who corruptly pay public officials undermine the confidence that citizens must have in their governmental institutions. The costs of corruption are borne by taxpayers, ratepayers, honest vendors and honest public employees. The Department of Justice is committed to prosecuting individuals who fraudulently game the system and line their own pockets at the expense of the public and of all those who labor honestly and follow the rules.”
According to testimony at trial, on November 3, 2008, Walton was hired as a consultant for the Clarksville, Tennessee Department of Electricity by Rick R. Ingram, Sr., then president of the Clarksville Department of Electricity. Between that date and June 29, 2009, Walton and his consulting firm, IntelliNet Consulting LLC, invoiced and received from the Clarksville Department of Electricity a total of $156,139,39. The payment of each invoice was approved by Ingram and during that same time, Walton paid $51,500 directly to Ingram or to one of Ingram’s creditors.
The payments made by Walton to Ingram were not disclosed to members of the Clarksville Electric Power Board or to other employees at the Clarksville Department of Electricity. The United States alleged that these payments by Walton were bribes and kickbacks and that the concealment of these payments from the Clarksville Department of Electricity deprived the Clarksville Department of Electricity and its customers of the honest services of Ingram.
On May 25, 2012, Rick Ingram pleaded guilty to two counts of honest services mail fraud and two counts of honest services wire fraud related to this same scheme and to a separate scheme involving Walton’s father, Tommy L. Walton, Sr. Rick Ingram testified at the trial that he would not have approved the payment of all invoices submitted to the Clarksville Department of Electricity by Walton and IntelliNet Consulting had Walton and IntelliNet Consulting not continued making payments to Ingram and to Ingram’s creditor.
Tommy L. Walton, Sr. pleaded guilty to eight counts of honest services mail fraud and to five counts of honest services wire fraud on January 14, 2013.
Sentencing hearings will be scheduled for each of these defendants. Each defendant faces up to twenty years in prison, fines of up to $250,000, and orders requiring payment of restitution to the Clarksville Department of Electricity.
This case was investigated by agents of the Tennessee Valley Authority- Office of Inspector General. The case was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorneys Byron Jones and John Webb.