Jury finds Philadelphia Councilmember Kenyatta Johnson, wife not guilty in federal corruption case

PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) — A jury acquitted Philadelphia City Councilman Kenyatta Johnson and his wife, Dawn Chavous, of bribery charges they faced in a federal retrial.

Both faced two honest service fraud charges, which carried twenty years in prison.

The original process resulted in a failed process.

Also acquitted of the same charges in the same trial on Wednesday were former Universal Companies executives – CEO Abdur Raheem Islam and former CFO Shahied Dawan.

Prosecutors alleged that Johnson accepted more than $60,000 in bribes under the guise of a consulting job for his wife and used his position to protect real estate holdings of Universal Companies, a nonprofit charter school and community development.

After five days of deliberations, the jury reached its verdict.

On Wednesday, a juror was substituted hours before sentencing.

“First and foremost, I want to thank my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ for protecting me and my family and giving us a positive judgment today. I especially want to thank all my supporters for their prayers and emails that have appeared in court and for believing us,” Councilor Johnson said.

Johnson’s attorney, Pat Egan, who represented him at the original trial and retrial, declined to elaborate on why the jury was replaced.

He limited his comments on the trial as two of the defendants in the case have yet to face the second phase of the trial.

“I said from the start that I didn’t believe there was evidence that our client did anything wrong and that’s why we went to court. So we challenged the case and luckily the jury agreed with us, finding that there was no evidence and finding our clients not guilty.”

The second phase of this process only affects Islam and Dawan.

Both men face a long list of charges different from those of the councilman and his wife.

The jury is due back in court on Thursday.

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https://6abc.com/kenyatta-johnson-not-guilty-dawn-chavous-acquitted-philadelphia-city-council-philly-councilman/12409508/ Jury finds Philadelphia Councilmember Kenyatta Johnson, wife not guilty in federal corruption case

Alley Einstein

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