Detroit Councilman Andre Spivey facing federal bribery charge

Posted at 11:01 AM, Jul 28, 2021

(WXYZ) — Detroit City Councilman Andre Spivey has been charged with one count of conspiracy to commit bribery.

The U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Michigan alleges that Spivey and a staffer took tens of thousands of dollars in bribes over the course of four years.

According to the criminal information filing, Spivey and a staffer identified as Public Official A, "corruptly accepted over $35,000 in bribe payments in connection with Spivey's position as a member of the Detroit City Council."

It also alleges that Spivey took a $1,000 cash bribe from an undercover law enforcement agent on Oct. 26, 2018.

The filing comes one day after Spivey's attorney, Elliott Hall, said Spivey would be indicted.

Hall said his client has cooperated with the U.S. Attorney’s office “for well over a year now to try to resolve this issue" and was surprised to learn that an indictment is forthcoming.

“We’re dealing with contributions people made to him that they consider to be a bribe,” Hall said, “but it has nothing to do, nothing to do with any kind of vote or his actions as a public official.”

Spivey Information by WXYZ-TV Channel 7 Detroit on Scribd

Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan released the following statement on the indictment:

"This is a sad day for Detroit and a sad day for Councilman Spivey and his family. We do have a process in this country where people are presumed innocent until proven guilty. Councilman Spivey is entitled to that presumption until he has his day in court."

Earlier this year, former Detroit councilman Gabe Leland was sentenced to 2 1/2 years of probation for a misconduct in office charge.

Leland represented Detroit's 7th district. Prosecutors said Leland accepted $7,500 in cash during his 2017 re-election campaign and free car repairs in exchange for his vote on a land deal.

During the plea hearing, Leland said he accepted the campaign contribution and knew it was illegal to do so.

In 2018, Leland was also indicted on federal bribery charges, but that case will be dismissed under his plea deal.