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LOS ANGELES (CBSLA) –  Los Angeles City Councilman Mark Ridley-Thomas and the former dean of USC’s School of Social Work have been indicted on federal corruption charges alleging a bribery scheme stemming from Ridley-Thomas’ time serving on the county Board of Supervisors, prosecutors announced today.

Prosecutors contend a Ridley-Thomas relative received substantial benefits from the university in exchange for Ridley-Thomas supporting county contracts and lucrative contract amendments with the university while he served on the county board.

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The 20-count indictment filed in Los Angeles federal court alleges that Ridley-Thomas conspired with Marilyn Louise Flynn to provide the relative with graduate school admission, a full-tuition scholarship, a paid professorship, and a mechanism to funnel Ridley-Thomas campaign funds through the university to a nonprofit to be operated by the relative.

Los Angeles City Councilman Mark Ridley-Thomas charged with conspiracy, bribery and fraud offenses allegedly committed while a member of the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors. Full announcement on grand jury indictment coming soon. @FBILosAngeles

— US Attorney L.A. (@USAO_LosAngeles) October 13, 2021

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(© Copyright 2021 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. City News Service contributed to this report.)

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‘It Kind of Blew Up in Their Face’: Liberal Poll Worker Who Busted Republican for Voter Fraud Gets $25k Bounty From Pro-Trump Official

On Thursday night, Rachel Maddow hosted a 2020 election poll worker named Eric Frank who busted a Republican voter for voting twice, once for himself and once for his son. The voter was convicted of election fraud and as a result, Frank collected a payout of $25,000 from Republican Texas Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick.

Last year, Patrick was one of the most vocal and visible purveyors of the baseless claim that the presidential election had been stolen from Donald Trump. Patrick even went so far as to reward any person who could prove an instance of voter fraud with a bounty of between $25,000 and $1 million.

After Frank provided his evidence, Patrick’s campaign wrote him a check for $25,000. The campaign explained that the reward was much less than $1 million because they were hoping to catch “bigger fish.” Frank told The Dallas Morning News he wasn’t sure what was meant by that.

On Thursday, Frank explained to Maddow how he busted 72-year-old Ralph Thurman at a polling station in Chester County, Pennsylvania. He said he wasn’t even supposed to working there that day, but his father, who is an elections official, asked him to cover for a poll worker who had called out due to Covid.

Frank explained how it happened:

One of the first voters that morning came in, Ralph Thurman. And he had first asked–he put his ID out. And the one poll worker said, “We don’t need to see your ID because you voted here for many years.” And he then–basically he said, “Well, couldn’t I come back and vote for my son?” And at that point I said, “No, you couldn’t do that, that’s illegal.” And he then responded by saying, “Well, how would you know?” And I kind of just left it at that, and he went on his way and voted.

And then about an hour later, I’m in my same position, and I hear the last name “Thurman,” and I look up, and lo and behold it’s the same guy wearing a hat and sunglasses. [Laughs] So I just couldn’t believe that he was back after we just had like a legitimate conversation about how he could not do that.

Frank said Thurman was reported to the authorities and he ended up testifying as a witness. He said a Dallas Morning News reporter helped him apply for the bounty.

“Did you actually think that you might get paid?” asked Maddow.

“No, I never thought in a million years that I would get paid,” said Frank. “I thought this was just somebody kind of speaking too much in the hopes that it would just get them more attention. I just think it’s extremely ironic that they were–it’s my opinion that they were trying to see, you know, voter fraud on someone that was a Democrat and it turns out that, at least for me, for my case that I witnessed, it was a Republican voter. So in fact I think it kind of blew up in their face a little bit.”

Watch above via MSNBC.

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