David McLean, a Margate, Florida city commissioner, was indicted Wednesday for allegedly accepting bribes in exchange for supporting three separate building grants, a press release from the U.S. Department of Justice indicates. McLean, 50, was booked into police custody on three counts of bribery in connection with a program receiving federal funds. A judge ordered he be held on a $50,000 bail bond. It is not yet known whether he has hired an attorney to represent his case.
According to reports, McLean works as a commissioner for the City of Margate. Reports did not say how long McLean has held that position or if he had fell under legal speculation in the past. So far, city officials have not commented on the allegations.
The indictment alleges that McLean received two separate bribes of $6,000 in exchange for supporting two Margate Community Redevelopment Agency Board construction grants. He also allegedly accepted a bribe for $6,000 for his influence in approving an occupational license for the owner of the strip mall where McLean operates a business. The strip mall’s owner also granted McLean breaks on his business’s rent at the mall, the indictment alleges.
Authorities both state and federal were quick to comment on the allegations. “Investigating public corruption remains one of the FBI’s top priorities. This indictment represents our commitment to investigate corrupt acts and the individuals who are behind them,” an FBI spokesperson said in regards to the case. “We encourage anyone who may have information about corruption to come forward and report it.”
A United States Attorney spokesperson for the Southern District of Florida also commented, saying, “Public officials who sell their office and their influence to line their own pockets with cash undermine the good work of all hard-working public servants, who labor for the public good. That is why corruption in government, at any level, will simply not be tolerated.”
In other news, Heather Costa of Boynton Beach was arrested Saturday after she allegedly masqueraded as a Comcast employee in order to jewelry from an elderly woman’s home. Costa, 38, was booked into the Palm Beach County Jail on charges of providing a false name to law enforcement, burglary of an occupied residence, and possession of drug paraphernalia. It is unclear whether she qualified for bail or hired legal representation.
According to reports, Costa went to 70-year-old Shasha’s home on Southwest Golfview Terrace and claimed that she was an employee for Comcast. Costa said she needed to enter the home to check the internet connection and televisions. Reports did not specify when the woman realized her property had been taken and alerted authorities, but it may have been before Costa left the residence.
Police spoke to Costa, who reportedly told police that her name was Meredith Altomair-Costa and that she worked for Comcast. Costa later changed her story and said she was a vendor. Eventually, she told the officers her real name and said she only lied because she was afraid there was a warrant out for her arrest, sources say. Police searched Costa and found items of jewelry that Shasha said were missing from her dresser. They also reportedly found a glass pipe, which may have been used to smoke crack cocaine.
Sources: 4.2.13 McLean Bribery.pdf.