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Former Detroit City Councilman Andre Spivey to be sentenced Weds. in bribery case

Andre Spivey
Posted at 7:22 AM, Jan 19, 2022
and last updated 2022-01-19 07:22:22-05

(WXYZ) — Former Detroit City Councilman Andre Spivey is expected to be sentenced Wednesday for taking bribes.

Both sides have briefed Federal Judge Victoria Roberts, who will sentence Spivey tomorrow morning. The U.S. Attorney is urging 40 months in prison and the defense is asking for probation because of cooperation.

Spivey pleaded guilty to Conspiracy to Commit Bribery in September.

The feds spell out how Spivey took $35,000 in cash from an unnamed Detroit towing contractor who worked with the FBI and was considered a CS or confidential source. It was broken down into eight payments over five years and the meetings were recorded.

Spivey said about the cash:“Make it look like a napkin," “I don’t want to touch it right here," and “We got feds everywhere.”

The feds told the judge, “Spivey’s criminal conduct was not a one-time slip or an isolated lapse of judgment.”

  PROSECUTION Andre Spivey Sentencing Memorandum by WXYZ-TV Channel 7 Detroit on Scribd

In September when Spivey pleaded guilty, Defense Attorney Elliot Hall told reporters outside of court, “We’ve been cooperating with the federal government for a year and a half.”

In August, the feds raided the homes and city hall offices of Detroit City Council members Jayne Ayers and Scott Benson. Neither one has been charged. Ayers lost the election in November. Benson remains on the council.

The Defense briefed the judge and says 47-year-old Spivey “takes full responsibility.” He worked as a pastor before going to law school and became “entrenched in a cycle of financial distress.” The contractor, they said, was considered a friend and the money as loans.

The defense also tells the judge there was no pay to play: “All of Mr. Spivey’s votes were against the CS’ business interests.”

  DEFENSE Sentenncing Memorandum for Andre Spivey by WXYZ-TV Channel 7 Detroit on Scribd

Mayor Mike Duggan would not comment on the sentence saying, “I'm not going to comment on that. What else would you like to talk about?”

The feds listed to the judge other Metro Detroit cases of public corruption including Detroit City Council member Monica Conyers, who received 37 months for accepting $16,000 in bribes and Troy City Manager Brian Kischnick, who received 30 months for accepting $20,000 in bribes. There was also Clinton Township Board Member Dean Reynolds, who lost at trial and received 17 years for accepting $130,000 in bribes.

Millions of dollars are made in towing in the city of Detroit. The mayor and police chief are reforming oversight and going to bids rather than permits to towing companies.