Former Richardson mayor in Sherman courthouse on federal charges

SHERMAN, Tex. (KXII) – Former Richardson mayor Laura Jordan,54, and husband Mark Jordan, 52, pleaded not guilty to federal bribery and corruption charges in a Sherman courtroom.

The seven-count indictment accuses Laura Jordan and Mark Jordan of honest services wire fraud, conspiracy to commit honest services with fraud, conspiracy to commit bribery, and bribery concerning programs receiving federal funds.

The indictment says developer Mark Jordan lavished Laura Jordan with gifts and trips in exchange for her vote on zoning changes for his controversial Palisades development.

It says Mark Jordan paid Laura Jordan over $18,000 in cash and $40,000 by check for her votes. He also paid for over $24,000 in renovations to her home as well as for luxury vacations, the indictment said. He gave her time, attention and sex, which prosecutors said both defendants valued highly.

Defense attorneys say there was no corruption, only a love affair. They say the two were involved in secret, and the gifts were of a romantic nature, not corruption.

The Dallas Morning News reports the trial is expected to last at least two weeks.

If convicted, the two face up to 20 years in federal prison.