Rep. John Rogers faced new charges on Friday after a federal grand jury indicted him. The charges stem from an investigation conducted last year by FBI investigators, who claim that Rogers was involved in a kickback scheme with state funds.
The grand jury has indicted the defendants on multiple charges, including money laundering, wire fraud, and mail fraud. These charges are a result of an investigation into the Jefferson County Community Service Fund, which was discovered to have been misused for illegal purposes such as bribes and kickbacks.
In 2015, state lawmakers passed a bill allowing the Jefferson County Commission to impose additional taxes to support public welfare and education. This measure was put into effect in late 2017. The funds generated from these taxes would then be allocated to various organizations, as determined by a committee consisting of state lawmakers from Jefferson County. This committee includes individuals like Rogers and former State Rep. Fred Plump, who faced charges of conspiracy and obstruction last year.
State representatives in the committee had the authority to direct approximately $100,000 a year to an organization of their choosing from 2018 to 2022.
According to the indictment, Rogers distributed approximately $400,000 from 2018 to 2022 to Piper Davis Youth Baseball League, which is owned by Plump. In exchange, Rogers and his assistant, Varrie Kindall, received approximately $200,000 as a kickback.
The indictment states that defendant John Rogers, with the assistance of defendant Varrie Kindall, was involved in a conspiracy where they recommended and ultimately paid most of defendant Rogers’ allotment of fund money to Piper Davis each fiscal year.
Defendant Rogers and Defendant Kindall required and received kickbacks from Fred Plump, using funds directed to Piper Davis.
According to the indictment, Rogers and Kindall had made an agreement that if their scheme was ever revealed, Kindall would accept complete responsibility for the crimes. In return, Rogers would handle personal matters for Kindall while he was in prison.
Rogers faced charges of obstruction last year in connection with the investigation. It was alleged that he had provided assistance to Plump in obtaining state grants as a bribe to prevent him from communicating with federal investigators.
Rogers is facing a fresh set of charges, which include conspiracy to commit mail and wire fraud, as well as the actual acts of wire and mail fraud. Additionally, he is now accused of conspiracy to obstruct justice, obstruction of justice, and making false statements. Meanwhile, Kindall, who serves as Rogers’ assistant, is also facing new charges, such as mail fraud, money laundering, wire fraud, obstruction of justice, obstruction of justice by bribery, failure to file a tax return, and aiding in the preparation of a false tax return.
Plump had already agreed to plead guilty to two criminal charges, pay $200,000 in restitution, and resign from office. Rogers, on the other hand, has vehemently denied any wrongdoing, stating, “I haven’t seen one red penny,” as reported by Alabama Daily News.
Rogers has been serving as the representative for Alabama House District 52 since 1982.
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