Ex-mayor takes stand to deny wrongdoing in corruption trial

August 29, 2018 GMT

PHILADELPHIA (AP) — A former eastern Pennsylvania mayor has taken the stand in his federal corruption trial to deny wrongdoing.

Former Reading mayor Vaughn Spencer is accused of trading city contracts for campaign donations and bribing a former councilman to try and repeal an anti-pay-to-play ordinance.

He faces nine counts of bribery, one count of honest services fraud and one count of conspiracy.

Prosecutors allege that Spencer made it clear to donors he would withhold official action from individuals and businesses that didn’t provide satisfactory campaign contributions for his 2015 re-election effort

But Spencer testified “I never promised anything” and “did not keep score” of those contributing to his campaigns.

Spencer, a Democrat who took office in 2012, lost the 2015 primary to current mayor Wally Scott.