NORFOLK -- A developer who pleaded guilty to federal charges in a bank fraud case accused Norfolk's vice mayor of making promises in exchange for a loan.
According to the Virginian Pilot, Tommy Arney testified that Anthony Burfoot promised him enough council votes to approve a gentleman's club in downtown Norfolk. Those votes would be delivered if Arney helped get a home loan for his then girlfriend and mother of his children.
Tuesday night, Burfoot said Arney made the claims because he spoke out against the club.
'I was the one out front in ensuring that we did not have this type of establishment downtown and so that's the bottom line. I've never had a conversation with Mr. Arney as it relates to that.'
Burfoot also said she could've easily gotten a home loan on her own since she worked for Bank of the Commonwealth, which was closed in 2011 after problems with defaulted commercial loans.
Arney and former executives were charged following an investigation into the bank's failure.
Burfoot stated he wouldn't jeopardize his marriage.
'I have a wife and a daughter and I'm happily married, my relationship with my twins' mother is great,' he said. 'I would never do anything to the detriment of my young ladies or to embarrass them. I have a nice home where my girls can and stay with me anytime. I would not go out on a limb and destroy everything I tried to build and deal with Mr. Tommy Arney.'
The Pilot reports Arney spent $2 million in 2009 to buy the vacant building next to his Havana restaurant to open the gentlemen's club.
Arney will be sentenced in May and faces up to 20 years in prison. It also reported that Arney admitted he hopes for leniency in exchange for his cooperation in the trial of the former bank executives.