On Wednesday, April 25, the Atlanta Daily World was the first to break news that the Georgia Bureau of Intelligence officials entered offices at Atlanta City Hall and seized items from City of Atlanta attorney Jeremy Berry’s office. The attorney reportedly fled the building during the GBI visit.
The GBI began its investigation into the city’s handling of open records requests after reports that City of Atlanta employees had been directed to thwart efforts to access public records which may provided information on city officials who may have committed crimes by delaying the production of public records and creating documents that resembled legal invoices but weren’t actual invoices.
The Atlanta Daily World received a cryptic message smuggled out of City Hall by an anonymous source, alerting staff that GBI officials were removing records from offices. “GBI is at city hall now, city attorney is said to have run out of the back door. It’s going down,” said the source.
The Georgia Bureau of Investigation’s criminal probe into Atlanta City Hall’s handling of open records requests was expanded in March to included the City of Atlanta’s law department and purported legal invoices it supplied to The Atlanta Journal-Constitution last fall.
City officials allegedly concealed billing records for the pay-to-play bribery probe in the account of a different city legal matter and directed the creation of new documents resembling invoices in an attempt to mislead sources requesting information under the Freedom of Information Act.
Mayor Kasim Reed in April of 2017 appointed Jeremy Berry will as the lead attorney for the city of Atlanta. Berry currently serves as a partner at Dentons US LLP, formerly McKenna, Long & Aldridge. He has focused his legal practice on governmental and regulatory affairs, government and public policy litigation, government contracts, and political law.
In addition to the alleged charges of criminal conduct in accounting practices, news broke that just days before former Mayor Kasim Reed left office, his administration showered select city employees with more than $518,000 in bonuses, and gifts that were presented during an “executive holiday party” at City Hall.
The spending spree has left the police union outraged, taxpayers fuming and council members questioning its legality.
BREAKING NEWS: GBI seizes documents from Atlanta City Hall today in scandal probe was originally published on atlantadailyworld.com