Representatives of a credit-reporting agency and three banks testified Tuesday that former New Roads Mayor T.A. “Tommy” Nelson’s reduced credit limits in 2009 had nothing to do with a federal grand jury subpoena for his credit report.
Nelson’s defense attorneys told jurors in his Baton Rouge racketeering trial last week that he did not accept bribes in an FBI sting until after the subpoena dried up his credit.
Federal prosecutors countered, however, that Nelson accepted more than $1,000 before the subpoena was served.
In other testimony Tuesday, the mayors of three Pointe Coupee Parish municipalities said they never discussed a garbage can-cleaning business with Nelson before he signed a letter to EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson. That letter said each of the parish’s four mayors supported the company’s sanitation plan.
An undercover FBI operative testified earlier that Nelson accepted more than $22,000 in bribes from him and two undercover FBI agents.
Those bribes were paid to ensure the garbage can-cleaning business, Cifer 5000, would receive a municipal contract in New Roads, testified William Myles, the FBI operative.
In addition, Myles testified that the money was for Nelson’s letter of support to the EPA and another to purported Cifer investors in Dallas. Myles said Nelson believed he would receive 10 percent of Cifer’s profits.
Nelson was told the letters were intended to secure as much as $4 million in federal grants for Cifer, Myles said. As much as $3 million was sought from investors.
Both letters actually went to the FBI. Cifer 5000 was an imaginary company. Myles and two FBI agents posed as corrupt businessmen seeking municipal business in the Baton Rouge area.
In addition to Nelson, indictments were obtained against six other municipal officials in Port Allen, St. Gabriel and White Castle.