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Federal government going after Ray Nagin for $500,000 following corruption conviction

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NEW ORLEANS — Federal prosecutors are trying to seize more than $500,000 from former New Orleans Mayor Ray Nagin following his February conviction on corruption charges.

NOLA.com/The Times-Picayune reports (http://bit.ly/1ix6C06 ) prosecutors filed asset forfeiture papers Tuesday in U.S. District Court and requested for a hearing on April 29.

Since Nagin was convicted of 16 counts of bribery, wire fraud and money laundering, prosecutors say all of the money related to those charges should be turned over the federal government. Nagin was also convicted of four counts of filing false tax returns, but those are not mentioned in the forfeiture documents.

Even if the motion is successful, the U.S. Attorney's Office may have a hard time getting the money. Nagin has recently declared he was broke and began soliciting donations to a legal defense fund.

Nagin is set to be sentenced June 11.

A jury decided Nagin's guilt on the corruption charges, but U.S. District Judge Ginger Berrigan will decide whether he will have to forfeit the $501,200.

In a document supporting their forfeiture request, the prosecutors note that Berrigan is not required to hear oral argument on the issue. The government also notes that it could have sought a larger forfeiture judgment against Nagin but opted instead to seek only the money directly to the corruption charges.


Information from: The Times-Picayune, http://www.nola.com

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