Not Guilty Verdicts in Colonies Corruption Case

Cars on highway

A real estate developer and two former top San Bernardino County officials were found not guilty Monday of corruption charges tied to the Colonies scandal, believed by many to be the most consequential case of its kind in the county’s history.

Jurors returned not guilty verdicts for Colonies Partners developer Jeffrey Burum, former county Supervisor Paul Biane and Mark Kirk, the former top aide for another past supervisor, Gary Ovitt, after beginning deliberations mid-last week.

The three had been facing charges over what prosecutors had alleged was a nefarious scheme to wield political influence to secure a $102 million land-use settlement from the county in 2006. The case was jointly prosecuted by the District Attorney and state Attorney General’s office.  

“This is a resounding but utterly predictable defeat for the District Attorney of San Bernardino County.”

— Stephen Larson

Red the full article by Shea Johnson of Daily Press here.


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