Cincinnati councilwoman arrested by FBI on federal charges

Cincinnati councilwoman arrested by FBI on federal charges
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The FBI arrested a Cincinnati councilwoman Tuesday morning on federal charges, her attorney confirmed to The Hill.

Democratic Councilwoman Tamaya Dennard was accused of wire fraud, bribery concerning programs receiving federal funds and attempted extortion, her attorney, Erik Laursen, said.

An affidavit obtained by The Cincinnati Enquirer alleges that she attempted to bribe and extort, including exchanging her votes for money, between August and December 2019.

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“As the affidavit details, a concerned citizen contacted law enforcement following an interaction with Dennard, feeling an ethical and moral obligation to report any criminal wrongdoing,” U.S. Attorney David M. DeVillers said, according to the Enquirer.

“The individual then worked at the direction of law enforcement throughout this investigation," DeVillers added. "It takes courage for citizens to come forward and assist law enforcement as this individual did.”

The individual, who worked with the FBI, alleged Dennard requested between $10,000 and $15,000 for personal expenses. Upon receiving the money, the councilwoman allegedly booked flights and trips with some of it.

The FBI Cincinnati office’s acting spokesman declined to comment to The Hill.

The councilwoman was reportedly scheduled to chair a committee meeting Tuesday morning, but did not show up, prompting the meeting to be canceled.

--This report was updated at 2:41 p.m.