The Latest: Mayor decries guarantee to contributor

ALLENTOWN, Pa. (AP) — The Latest on the Allentown mayor’s testimony in his corruption trial (all times local):

5 p.m.

The Democratic mayor of Pennsylvania’s third-largest city is telling a jury that he was horrified when he learned one of his political consultants had guaranteed favorable treatment to a real estate developer who’d donated campaign cash.

Allentown Mayor Ed Pawlowski testified Wednesday at his federal corruption trial. Prosecutors say Pawlowski traded city contracts for campaign contributions to his failed runs for governor and U.S. Senate. The mayor denies wrongdoing.

Pawlowski’s political consultant, Sam Ruchlewicz, cooperated with the government and secretly recorded conversations with the mayor.

Pawlowski said Wednesday that Ruchlewicz acted without his knowledge in his dealings with the developer. He says Ruchlewicz was “out there doing stuff that wasn’t right, that wasn’t proper, that didn’t reflect who I was.”

Ruchlewicz has not been charged with a crime.

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11:12 a.m.

The mayor of Pennsylvania’s third-largest city is defending himself against accusations that he sold his office to campaign donors.

Allentown Mayor Ed Pawlowski took the witness stand Wednesday in his federal corruption trial. He’s telling a jury that he entered public service to “make a difference.”

The Democrat is battling dozens of counts of fraud, bribery, attempted extortion and lying to the FBI. The most serious charges carry a maximum prison term of 20 years each.

Prosecutors allege that Pawlowski rigged a series of contracts to go to law firms and businesses that supported his failed campaigns for governor and U.S. Senate. The four-term mayor denies running a pay-to-play scheme.

The trial is in its fifth week.

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