Jeff Jafari - indicted
Photo: HANDOUT
Photo: HANDOUT

Atlanta businessman indicted in latest city hall scandal charges

Federal prosecutors have charged Jeff Jafari, a former executive vice president of PRAD Group, on charges of bribery, witness tampering and tax evasion in the latest twist in the ongoing Atlanta City Hall corruption scandal.

In a 51-count indictment, prosecutors allege that Jafari made multiple payments to Adam Smith, Atlanta’s former Chief Procurement Officer, up until Smith’s arrest in early 2017.

Jafari was a longtime contractor with the city of Atlanta and a major campaign contributor to various city politicians. Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms and city council members returned tens of thousands in campaign contributions after a raid at the PRAD Group’s offices in September 2017.

The indictment accuses Jafari of attempting to have Smith lie to federal agents about the bribes and includes snippets of conversations he had with Smith.

ORIGINAL DOCUMENT: Read the indictment

Jafari urged Smith to describe the payments as loans and said that the two needed to “stay on the same page.”

“Adam, we’re in trouble if you don’t - if you cave in, I’m (expletive),” Jafari said according to the indictment.

Jafari, who was also a political supporter of former mayor Kasim Reed, left PRAD shortly after the 2017 raid. 

The company is an architectural, design, and construction management and services firm headquartered in Atlanta that has done business with the city dating back to 1984.

Since the federal corruption investigation into Atlanta City Hall became public in 2017, five people have plead guilty to various charges. Most involved bribes from city vendors who received lucrative contracts.

Two former city contractors and three city employees have received prison sentences.

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