Redflex sparks bribery sting in Mo.
By Ari Cohn, Tribune
August 19, 2006
A Scottsdale-based traffic camera company worked with federal investigators to help bring about a bribery indictment against the mayor of a St. Louis suburb. Redflex Traffic Systems operates photo enforcement cameras in 90 North American cities, including Scottsdale.
Here, the company operates six speeding cameras on Loop 101 and nine on surface streets, along with four mobile photo enforcement vans, said city spokesman Pat Dodds.
But when it came to St. Peters, Mo., Redflex was presented with an ultimatum, a federal indictment states.
Although the city’s Board of Aldermen already had approved an ordinance allowing a contract to install redlight cameras, Mayor Shawn Brown demanded Redflex pay him $2,750, lest he veto the deal, the indictment states.
Redflex spokesman Jay Heiler said Friday that company representatives contacted the FBI, which set up a sting.
“Redflex and its employees have been cooperating with the authorities in the investigation from the very beginning and will continue to do so until the matter is resolved,” Heiler said.
Tom Albus, an assistant U.S. attorney for the Eastern Missouri District, said FBI investigators praised Redflex’s help. “(RedFlex) cooperated with the government and brought it to the attention of the government in the first place,” Albus said.
Brown was released from custody on $10,000 bond and is awaiting his arraignment, scheduled for Monday, Albus said.