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BPDA Employee Pleads Guilty To Federal Bribery Charges

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The U.S. District Courthouse of Massachusetts in Boston
The U.S. District Courthouse of Massachusetts in Boston

The former assistant director of real estate at Boston's Economic Development Industrial Corp., a division of the Boston Planning & Development Agency, has pleaded guilty to accepting bribes from a developer.

John Lynch, 66, pleaded guilty Friday to one count of bribery and one count of filing a false tax return, the U.S. Attorney's Office for Massachusetts announced. Lynch resigned his position at the BPDA Aug. 16, the Boston Business Journal reports

The charges stem from a 2017 incident in which an unnamed developer paid Lynch $50K in exchange for Lynch's influence over a Zoning Board of Appeals vote.

The developer needed a permit extended on its multifamily building, and after Lynch procured the vote from the board, the developer was able to sell the building and realize $500K more in profits than it otherwise would have, according to the U.S. Attorney's office.

Lynch received $25K in cash and a $25K check as part of the bribe. He has agreed to plead guilty on the two counts, and the attorneys prosecuting the case, U.S. Attorney Andrew Lelling and Assistant U.S. Attorney Dustin Chao, have recommended a prison term of 46 to 57 months. 

BPDA Director Brian Golden said he was "outraged" by the charges.

“These charges are deeply troubling and do not represent the work or the employees of the agency,” Golden told the BBJ in a statement. “While we believe that this was an isolated incident outside of his official capacity at the Economic Development Industrial Corporations (EDIC), the agency is committed to fully cooperating with the U.S. Attorney’s Office.”