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Wynne Talks to KPRC on Houston Mayor’s Alleged Bribe Acceptance

KPRC Houston is investigating an email train possibly indicated that the mayor of Houston, Sylvestor Turner, accepted bribes.

On Aug. 11, 2017, Yoo emailed Andy Icken, Houston’s chief development officer, and William Paul Thomas, director of city council relations.

Yoo asked Turner to help him close a private land deal involving BP headquarters in Houston for $348 million. Yoo asked Turner to talk with the BP CEO to see if they would work with him and his partners, according to the email.

“I will donate $500,000 to city or other charity firms that Mayor wants,” Yoo wrote, if the deal closed.

Michael J. Wynne, a public corruption attorney and former federal prosecutor, was asked by KPRC to comment.

“I’ve seen a lot of emails that have gotten people in a lot of trouble. I’m not sure how often I have seen something that is this straightforward laying out the quid pro quo that they have in mind, that is the money in return for closing a deal.”

Almost two years after members of Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner’s received an email offer of $500,000 if the mayor helped close a private land sale, Turner honored the man writing the email.

“You distance yourself from somebody who is sending an email like that. That clearly didn’t happen, in this case. If anything, he was embraced,” explained Wynne.

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