DETROIT (AP) – Federal authorities say they’re close to announcing whether new charges will be brought following a years-long investigation of corruption in Wayne County government.
U.S. Attorney Barbara McQuade tells The Detroit News in an interview that the three-year investigation is winding down and charges could be announced early next year. The case has led to convictions of former aides to Wayne County Executive Robert Ficano and a contractor.
McQuade says they have “some additional avenues we need to pursue” and they hope they’re “close to reaching a decision on whether any additional people will be charged.”
The investigation has dogged Ficano’s administration, contributing to his re-election loss in the August primary. The ongoing FBI probe followed an investigation of Detroit City Hall that netted dozens of convictions and sent former Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick to prison.
In an interview, Ficano told the newspaper that he feels “really fortunate” after 32 years of public service, including 20 as a sheriff and 12 as county executive. He says he has no regrets and he’s focused on working with the transition team for his successor.
Ficano says his office has been open with the FBI and he’s confident that he won’t be charged. He says there is “no way I have done anything wrong or illegal.”
The FBI earlier disclosed in court filings some information about the federal investigation into Wayne County. McQuade says everyone “has an interest in a timely resolution when it involves public officials” but noted that the “investigations are complex.”
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