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Gwinnett Planning Commissioner Charged With Bribery, District 1 Commissioner With Accepting Bribes

Here are some top Patch headlines not far from Roswell.

- Duluth Patch

Former Gwinnett County Commissioner Shirley Lasseter, 64, was sentenced to 33 months in federal prison without parole in federal district court in Atlanta Wednesday (Sept. 5) for accepting bribes.

Lasseter pleaded guilty May 31 to accepting $36,500 in bribes during 2011 from an FBI agent posing as a South Florida real estate developer to support a proposed real estate development in her district. Lasseter resigned from her District 1 seat on the Gwinnett County Commission that day. She represented Duluth, Suwanee and Sugar Hill on the commission.

Her son John Fanning, 34, of Dacula, and Carl “Skip” Cain, 65, of Flowery Branch, pleaded guilty in May to participating in the bribery scheme and to drug trafficking. Their sentencing was delayed until Sept. 18 at the request of their lawyers.

Cain acted as a “bagman” for Lasseter and Fanning, arranging the bribes and setting up meetings where the payments were made. Fanning and Cain each laundered $10,000 in purported drug money and also acted as drug couriers for what they believed was cocaine in a FBI sting operation.

- Suwanee Patch

Former Gwinnett Planning Commissioner Mark Gary has been charged by federal authorities in Atlanta with bribery in connection with a payment made to then-Commissioner Shirley Lasseter, according to media reports.

The Atlanta Journal Constitution reported Wednesday (Sept. 5) that Gary, who is part of Gary Holding Group in Johns Creek, paid $30,000 in casino chips to influence Lasseter's vote on a solid waste transfer station in Norcross.

Lasseter voted for the transfer station on April 28, 2009. The following June, Gary gave the chips to her son, John Fanning, federal court documents say.

Lasseter, whose Gwinnett District 1 included Suwanee, Duluth and Sugar Hill, appointed Gary to the planning commission in 2009, according to media reports.

The 10th annual Marietta-Cobb Career Expo will be held Wednesday, Sept. 19 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Cobb County Civic Center at 548 South Marietta Parkway in Marietta.

Businesses, colleges and service organizations will be on hand to recruit during the free event.

- Midtown Patch

An armed pedestrian robbery in Midtown late Tuesday evening resulted in the arrest of two suspects.

According to the Atlanta Police, two male victims departed shortly after 11 p.m. and began walking east on 10th Street before turning south on Charles Allen Drive. The victims said they noticed a newer modeled white mini van pass them slowly and then saw two men emerge from the van.

Near 952 Charles Allen, the suspects, including one dressed in all black and wearing a ski mask, approached the victims. The suspect in the ski mask produced a handgun that he pointed at one of the victim’s head.

The suspects robbed the men of their belongings, including an iPhone, and then fled on foot south towards 8th Street. One of the victims pursued the suspects while the other victim flagged down an APD patrol car and described the white van.

The white Dodge Caravan with a Florida tag was later stopped by APD officers at 180 Ponce de Leon Avenue, where Shermaine Caison, 24, of Ellenwood, Ga., was arrested and charged with armed robbery.

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