Did a New Orleans theater owner bribe the city’s former Mayor Ray Nagin by paying for a vacation in New York, including private jet and limo service, in return for loan and tax waivers? That’s one of the charges in a 21-count indictment against Nagin handed down by a federal grand jury last week. While the indictment refers to the bribe giver as “Businessman A,” local TV station WWL reports that it’s one of the owners of Grand of the East, a movie theater that has been abandoned for years. It owes New Orleans $6M from an unpaid Housing and Urban Development loan. The station reports that it tried to find out what’s going on from T. George Solomon Jr., who’s listed as the theater developer and operator and owns a local movie chain, Southern Theatres. “We went to Solomon’s mansion Uptown and were turned away at the gate,” the station says on its web site. “We also left a message for him at Southern Theatres that was not returned.” The city’s current Mayor Mitch Landrieu is trying to collect on the unpaid loan.
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