© 2022 WFSU Public Media
WFSU News · Tallahassee · Panama City · Thomasville
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
Available On Air Stations

Breaking: 44 Count Federal Indictment Leveled Against Scott Maddox, Carter-Smith

City Commissioner Scott Maddox in his office (2013)

Tallahassee City Commissioner Scott Maddox and political consultant Paige Carter-Smith have been indicted on 44 federal counts involving corruption. They’re accused of conspiring to operate a racketeering enterprise that engaged in acts of bank fraud, extortion, fraud, and bribery. 

The U.S. Attorney’s Office in the Northern District of Florida says they’re also charged with making false statements to federal officers and filing false tax returns.

Their initial appearance in federal is scheduled for this afternoon at 3:00 in Tallahassee. The trial date will be determined at the hearing.

Maddox and Carter-Smith operated two companies collectively known as “Governance.”

Per the indictment, Governance was part of a racketeering enterprise that extorted money and accepted bribes from clients -- under color of Maddox’s political office and through fear of the economic harm that Maddox could inflict in his position as a City Commissioner. The indictment alleges that Maddox voted on matters and exerted influence on City employees to take actions that benefitted the businesses that were clients of Governance.

The indictment alleges that during the course of the conspiracy, Maddox made false statements under oath and concealed from the Tallahassee City Attorney and the City Commission the fact that he was being paid by companies doing business with the City.

"This is unsettling news, and I trust the legal system will set matters straight. We are committed to operating with full transparency and holding ourselves to the highest ethical standards. I hope this matter is resolved quickly for everyone involved. In the meantime, we at the City of Tallahassee will work to move our community forward with a focus on providing high quality services to our residents," Tallahassee Mayor John Dailey said in a statement released by his office. 

The indictment further alleges that Maddox and Carter-Smith also defrauded a bank of more than $250,000 through two fraudulent short sales.

The investigation was conducted by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Internal Revenue Service.

These charges add up to potentially decades of prison time.