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State v. Agan

384 S.E.2d 863 (1989)

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State v. Agan

Georgia Supreme Court

384 S.E.2d 863 (1989)

Facts

Ramsey Agan (defendant), the honorary Turkish consul in Atlanta, was building a hotel and sought a building-height variance from the Dekalb County Commission. Agan’s application for a variance was rejected twice. The third time he submitted his application, Agan contacted two commissioners and offered them both campaign contributions, totaling thousands of dollars, while attempting to convince the commissioners to grant him the building variance. Agan was charged with bribery for offering the commissioners money in exchange for an official act and was found guilty by the district court. The court of appeals reversed the decision, arguing that the district court failed to consider the bribery statute in conjunction with the state’s Ethics in Government Act, which required candidates and elected officials to report all campaign contributions. The court of appeals held that campaign contributions that are properly reported under the Ethics in Government Act cannot be bribes, because the candidates and elected officials are entitled to receive them. The government (plaintiff) appealed.

Rule of Law

Issue

Holding and Reasoning (Hunt, J.)

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