Former Pr. George's County Executive Jack Johnson Pleads Not Guilty | WAMU 88.5 - American University Radio

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Former Pr. George's County Executive Jack Johnson Pleads Not Guilty

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Jack Johnson speaks to the press after his arrest in November.
David Schultz
Jack Johnson speaks to the press after his arrest in November.

Johnson plead not guilty to eight charges in all, including extortion, bribery and conspiracy.

Johnson and wife, Leslie, were arrested back in November and charged with witness and evidence tampering.

Later, Johnson spoke in defense of the charges.

"First of all, I don't even recognize the person that's being charged in these indictments," he says.

Johnson's attorney, Billy Martin, vowed to push back hard on six years of evidence collected by the feds.

"We're going to attack the wiretaps and all of the information that's been used by the FBI in this investigation," Martin says.

Government lawyers expect to turn over additional wiretap evidence next week.

No trial date has been set.

ORIGINAL POST: Former Prince George's County Executive Jack Johnson will be arraigned Tuesday on charges of federal bribery. The corruption charges include trading favors while in office.

Johnson will enter a formal plea before a federal judge this afternoon. He faces eight charges related to soliciting and taking bribes from business owners and developers.

The indictment alleges that Johnson accepted items of value -- including money, airline tickets, rounds of golf, and mortgage payments -- in return for official favors.

It also says the pay-to-play scandal lasted almost through Johnson's entire term in office.

The former county executive was busted in November when federal agents doing surveillance observed Johnson allegedly accepting $15,000 from an unnamed developer.

Johnson and his wife were also overheard on a wiretap plotting to hide more than $79,000 in cash and to flush a $100,000 check from a developer down the toilet.

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