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Former Surrey planner intends to plead guilty to bribery, fraud
A former City of Surrey planner is intending to plead guilty later this month to charges related to accepting bribes and defrauding the city.
Akonyu Akolo, who was fired in 2010, was criminally charged in 2011 after a lengthy police investigation.
Akolo was scheduled to be in Surrey Provincial Court on Wednesday (Sept. 18), but he did not attend. He faces five charges – bribing an agent, corrupt municipal official, breach of trust by a public officer, giving false account to deceive principal, and fraudulent concealment.
His next court date is Sept. 26, and the court registry indicates he plans to enter guilty pleas at that time.
Akolo was in charge of area planning and development for South Surrey. He had worked for the city for 17 years.
It was alleged he accepted bribes from developers in order to fast-track development applications. His questionable dealings were reported to city officials by a developer in April 2010. During their investigation, police found no criminal wrongdoing on the part of the developer or any other Surrey staffers.
Akolo initially denied all the allegations.
The City of Surrey also has a civil lawsuit against Akolo over missing funds.
In a suit filed in April 2010, the city claimed unnamed developers acted in conspiracy with Akolo to bilk the city out of various development fees. The city also accused Akolo of using the funds he took to purchase his home in North Delta.
Those allegations have yet to be proven in court.
- with files from Kevin Diakiw