NORFOLK, Va. – Anthony L. Burfoot, 48, of Norfolk, was indicted by a federal grand jury on charges of conspiracy to commit honest services wire fraud, honest services wire fraud, conspiracy to obtain property under color of official right, obtaining property under color of official right, and perjury. Burfoot is a former Vice Mayor of Norfolk and City Councilman.
According to the indictment, from 2005 through in or about Feb. 15, 2011, Burfoot engaged in a scheme to defraud the citizens of Norfolk of their right to the honest services of a Norfolk Councilman, Vice Mayor, and Chief Deputy Treasurer. Specifically, the indictment alleges that over a period of years, Burfoot solicited things of value including money, car payments, and home appliances from individuals with matters before council and, in exchange, promised to perform specific official acts as well as other actions on an as needed basis on their behalf. The indictment provides detailed allegations of Burfoot’s illicit relationships with the managers of Tivest Development company as well as TA, another developer and local restaurant owner.
The managers of Tivest paid hundreds of thousands of dollars to Burfoot and, in exchange, Burfoot voted in favor of City ordinances that provided City-owned land to Tivest for nominal cost and additional City funds for infrastructure improvements. At Burfoot’s request, TA paid $25,000 to the mother of two of Burfoot’s children after Burfoot promised to obtain the necessary votes for TA to open a gentlemen’s club on Granby Street in Norfolk. Finally, the indictment alleges that Burfoot committed perjury, in numerous ways, by claiming under oath during a federal trial that he had never accepted nor solicited a thing of value in exchange for performing an official act.
The statutes under which Burfoot was charged carry maximum penalties ranging from 5 to 20 years in prison, if convicted. The maximum statutory sentence is prescribed by Congress and is provided here for informational purposes, as the sentencing of the defendant will be determined by the court based on the advisory Sentencing Guidelines and other statutory factors.
Dana J. Boente, U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia; and John S. Adams, Special Agent in Charge of the FBI’s Norfolk Field Office, made the announcement after the indictment was unsealed. Burfoot is scheduled to appear today for his initial appearance before U.S. Magistrate Judge Douglas E. Miller. Assistant U.S. Attorneys Melissa E. O’Boyle, Uzo E. Asonye, and Katherine Lee Martin are prosecuting the case.
A copy of this press release may be found on the website of the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Virginia. Related court documents and information may be found on the website of the District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia or on PACER by searching for Case No. 2:16-cr-6.
An indictment contains allegations that a defendant has committed a crime. Every defendant is presumed to be innocent until and unless proven guilty in court.
Source: U.S. Department of Justice