Donate

Prosecutor: Pennsylvania mayor ‘sold his office’ to donors

Allentown Mayor Edwin Pawlowski walks from the federal building in Philadelphia, Thursday, July 27, 2017.

Allentown Mayor Edwin Pawlowski walks from the federal building in Philadelphia, Thursday, July 27, 2017. (Matt Rourke/AP Photo)

A federal prosecutor says the mayor of Allentown, Pennsylvania “sold his office” to campaign donors.

Opening statements were held Monday in the corruption trial of Democrat Ed Pawlowski.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Anthony Wzorek told jurors in Allentown that Pawlowski rigged city contracts in favor of law firms and businesses that gave him money for campaigns for governor and U.S. Senate.

He says Pawlowski retaliated against companies that refused to play along or didn’t give sufficiently.

Defense attorney Jack McMahon denies an explicit connection between city work and campaign contributions. He accused the government of relying on “conniving, morally bankrupt” witnesses to build its case.

Pawlowski plans to testify in his own defense.

The mayor won re-election in November and began his fourth term this month.

Want a digest of WHYY’s programs, events & stories? Sign up for our weekly newsletter.

Help us get to 100% of our membership goal to support the reporters covering our region, the producers bringing you great local programs and the educators who teach all our children.