SACRAMENTO — A former Sacramento County supervisor and an Orange County businessman were indicted by a federal grand jury Wednesday on bribery and conspiracy charges stemming from a 1983 cable television deal.
William Bryan, 51, a former supervisor and chairman of a Sacramento cable commission, and his former wife, Patricia, 44, were charged with accepting a loan guarantee and a $150,000 line of credit from Joseph Parks, 51, a Corona businessman who lives in Orange County.
Parks allegedly gave the money to Bryan in exchange for Bryan's help in securing a lucrative contract to install underground cable in Sacramento, U.S. Atty. David Levi said.
"In the spring of 1983, Bryan and Parks met on several occasions and discussed the payment of bribes to Bryan in return for help by Bryan in getting Parks the underground cable contracts," Levi said at a Sacramento news conference to announce the indictments.
Federal prosecutors, assisted by the Sacramento County district attorney's office, the FBI and the state Fair Political Practices Commission, compiled the evidence that led to the indictments, Levi said.
The indictment charges that Bryan learned in October, 1983, that Cablevision was the front-runner for the Sacramento cable television franchise. After meeting with Parks, Bryan and his wife allegedly traveled to New York to meet with the president of Cablevision and "strongly urged Cablevision to hire Parks for the underground cable construction work." Later that same month, Bryan and other members of the cable commission voted in favor of awarding the Sacramento cable franchise to Cablevision.
The indictment alleges conspiracy and interstate travel in aid of a racketeering enterprise. Each defendant faces a maximum penalty of 10 years in prison and a $20,000 fine.
Bryan last month settled a civil lawsuit brought by the FPPC for a record $290,000, in which Bryan admitted violations in 55 of 60 causes of action in the FPPC's complaint. The complaint charged Bryan with failing to fully and truthfully disclose campaign receipts and expenses, sources of personal income and investments.
Levi said arraignments are expected within two weeks. He said the exact whereabouts of the Bryans was unknown. They have addresses listed in Minnesota and Hawaii, he said. Parks lives in Orange County, Levi said.