Lehigh Valley

Allentown mayor takes stand in his federal corruption trial

ALLENTOWN, Pa. - Allentown Mayor Ed Pawlowski has taken the witness stand in his own defense against allegations he engaged in pay-to-play.

Defense attorney Jack McMahon called one character witness when trial resumed Wednesday morning before putting Pawlowski on the stand.

The federal corruption trial of the recently re-elected mayor entered its fifth week on Tuesday.

FBI Special Agent Scott Curtis returned to the stand Tuesday morning. Pawlowski's attorney Jack McMahon then called several character witnesses to testify before the judge recessed trial.

After a lengthy break, the judge sent the jury home for the day around 11:30 a.m. Neither the prosecution, nor the defense could comment on the reason behind Tuesday’s abbreviated session. McMahon did characterize the delay as a minor procedural issue.

Pawlowski is facing more than 50 federal charges, accused of trading favors and city contracts in exchange for campaign donations.

After three weeks of a host of secret recordings and witnesses that included city employees, former employees and a campaign aide that was close to the mayor, the prosecution rested last Tuesday.

The defense for Pawlowski's co-defendant, attorney Scott Allinson, then presented its case. Allinson is accused of trying to funnel city legal work toward his law firm, Norris McLaughlin, for the promise of generating campaign donations for Pawlowski.

McMahon began his defense of Pawlowski last Thursday. McMahon has consistently maintained that campaign manager Michael Fleck was using the clients from his business consulting firm as a source for campaign donations for Pawlowski, the primary client for his campaign consulting firm.

McMahon said on the first day of trial, January 22nd, that Pawlowski would testify in his own defense.

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