Ala. Official Convicted of Receiving Bribes from Agent

February 11, 2005

Alice Martin, United States Attorney for the Northern District of Alabama and Carmen Adams, Special Agent in Charge, Federal Bureau of Investigation, and Ron Jones, State of Alabama Examiners of Public Accounts announced that a jury returned a guilty verdict against Cherokee County Commissioner Leonard H. Woodall, 56, of Gaylesville, Alabama, finding him guilty on all five counts charged in the indictment.

The indictment returned on Dec. 8, 2004, charged Woodall with accepting bribe payments in 2003 and 2004 from Michael Tillery, an insurance agent in Centre, for Woodall influence in the renewing and maintaining Cherokee County’s insurance business with Tillery’s agency.

Three remaining counts charged Woodall with making false statements to the FBI concerning the nature of the bribes from Tillery and false statements concerning an additional $2,500.00 bribe from lobbyist Lanny Young in 1998 in connection with the Three-Corners Landfill.

Sentencing will be set at a later date before United States District Judge L. Scott Coogler.

“This conviction sends the important message that county government is not for sale in Northern Alabama. Elected officials who betray the trust of the voters will be held accountable and punished accordingly.” stated Martin.

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