A Brownsville school district board member has been charged with bribery, KRGV reported.
Board vice president Sylvia P. Atkinson was arrested by the FBI on Tuesday. A federal indictment that charges her with conspiracy, bribery of public officials and bribery using public funds says that she used her position to obtain money from people and private companies, the TV station reported.
She is being held without bond, and the charges against her also include Travel Act violations because electronic communications were used during the other alleged crimes.
In one incident described in the indictment, an undercover FBI task force officer and a “cooperating individual” held a series of meetings with Atkinson in December 2018 in which they offered to bribe her to be allowed to use school facilities in a “Hollywood” movie. Atkinson allegedly was paid $4,000 to get the film project on the school board agenda and another $6,000 after it was passed this February.
“I can assure you that what you need to get done, in this area, will get done,” Atkinson allegedly told the individual when she was asked if she would assist in further projects in exchange for bribes.