Former Richardson Mayor Laura Jordan and the land developer she married indicted on public corruption charges in zoning conspiracy – Dallas Business Journal
Former Richardson Mayor Laura Jordan and a land developer whom she eventually married have been indicted on federal conspiracy violations in the Eastern District of Texas.
Laura Jordan, also known as Laura Maczka, 53, and Mark Jordan, 51, both of Plano, were named in a seven-count indictment charging them with conspiracy to commit honest services wire fraud, honest services wire fraud, conspiracy to commit bribery and bribery involving programs receiving federal funds.
A federal grand jury returned the indictment on May 10, and Maczka and Jordan made initial appearances Wednesday before U.S. Magistrate Judge Kimberly Priest Johnson.
Jordan’s company wanted to build apartments near a neighborhood that opposed them. The indictment says that in exchange for Jordan’s support of the developer’s project, he offered and she accepted monetary payments, payments to renovate her house, luxury hotel stays, flight upgrades, meals, a lucrative job and "intimate sexual contact."
When Jordan ran for mayor, she opposed building apartments, but later changed her mind.
In exchange for her votes, the indictment states Mark Jordan paid her over $18,000 in cash and $40,000 by check, paid for over $24,000 in renovations to her home, and provided "lucrative employment" with one of his companies.
Neither Maczka nor Jordan disclosed their collaboration in the zoning changes and the benefits the former mayor received, according to the indictment.
A three-week investigation in 2015 concluded there was no evidence at the time that Maczka or the City Council violated state law or city ethics rules when it approved a zoning change for Jordan’s controversial Palisades mixed-use project along Central Expressway.
A group of Richardson residents at the time called for Maczka’s immediate resignation, saying that emails raised questions about her relationship with Jordan and her vote on the development project. She denied there was a conflict of interest when the rezoning case was approved.
“These are the kinds of things that make the public distrust government officials,” U.S. Attorney Joseph D. Brown said in a prepared statement. “Public servants should not be for sale, and this indictment clearly indicates that Ms. Maczka’s vote was for sale, and Mr. Jordan certainly was willing to buy it.”
This case is being investigated by the FBI.
"With the indictment and arrest of Maczka and Jordan, the FBI will continue its efforts to identify and bring to justice those public servants who use their positions of trust to benefit themselves personally and conspire with others to violate federal corruption laws," said Erick K. Jackson, FBI Dallas special agent-in-charge.
If convicted, both Maczka and Jordan face up to 20 years in federal prison.