Attorney says former Allentown official will plead to conspiracy

    An attorney representing Allentown’s former city controller said his client will plead guilty to a charge announced Wednesday amid an FBI probe of government contracting in Pennsylvania’s third-largest city.

    Defense attorney Eric Dowdle told the Associated Press on Wednesday that 65-year-old Mary Ellen Koval will enter the plea to one count of conspiracy Thursday in federal court. He said she believes the plea and her resignation last month were in the best interest of the people of Allentown.

    Prosecutors charged Koval with conspiracy to commit honest services fraud, alleging that between January 2014 and last month she and others were involved in a scheme involving bribery and kickbacks.

    The city’s former finance director pleaded guilty Monday to conspiracy to commit fraud and a former city solicitor awaits sentencing.

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