A local businessman who had ties to Ray Nagin's business dealings was charged in a two-count Bill of Information. The Bill of Information charges Frank Fradella with conspiring to bribe an unnamed public official.
The charges say that Fradella conspired to bribe "public official A," described by prosecutors as being in office from May 2002 to May 2010. That is the same time frame of Ray Nagin's tenure as Mayor.
Fradella's company reportedly had contracts with the city for repair work in the French Quarter and at Louis Armstrong International Airport.
In the earlier federal investigation in Texas, according to a 2009 investigation by the Securities and Exchange Commission, Fradela's company Home Solutions of America "recorded millions of dollars in bogus revenue and issued a series of materially false press releases boasting robust financial results following Katrina and other weather-related disasters, thus inflating the company's stock price."
The SEC investigation charged that the firm's stock price plunged following large "insider stock sales, the filing of private securities lawsuits alleging fraud, and the company's public announcement that it would restate its financial statements."
According to the SEC, Fradella "dumped approximately $6.8 million worth of stock into the inflated market."
Fradella reportedly assisted Nagin's family-owned granite counter-top business in securing work with Home Depot. The Home Depot contracts came at the same time that Fradella was also the recipient of multiple lucrative contracts from the city.
Fradella was facing the securities fraud charges in Texas, and his case has been transferred the New Orleans federal prosecutor's office.
At to exactly what is going to happen in the New Orleans arraignment today, Fradella's attorney Randy Smith told WWL-TV's Paul Murphy, “I'm not at liberty to give details until they come out, but it's going to be more than the Dallas case."