What was former Newark Mayor Sharpe James’ fault?

April 17th, 2008 - 12:15 am ICT by amritpal  

Sharpe James is a Democratic politician from New Jersey, who has had a remarkable and almost flawless career till date. He served as State Senator for the 29th Legislative District and was 35th Mayor of Newark, New Jersey. James was the second African American Mayor of Newark and served five, four-year terms before declining to run for re-election. From June 1999 until leaving his position as Mayor in July 2006, James simultaneously served as Mayor of Newark and New Jersey State Senator. He declined to run for re-election to the State Senate in 2007; his term as Senator expired in January 2008.

Effectively, what he was charged of is that he sold city-owned properties to his then girlfriend Tamika Riley, who quickly resold them and earned hundreds of thousands of dollars in quick profits. The jury said that he abused his office as mayor and betrayed his constituents by arranging for the sale of nine city-owned properties for $46,000 to Riley from 2001 to 2005. Riley quickly sold them for $665,000 without ever starting required rehabilitation work on most of them, prosecutors said.[AP]

However, this is not all. He still faces a federal trial on charges he used city-issued credit cards to pay for $58,000 worth of personal expenses while he was mayor, including trips with her several girlfriends. For 36 years Sharpe James was like the king of the city and now his reputation is all time low.

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