Town’s Downfall Part 2: Ending the Expanded North Birmingham Investigation

When U.S. Attorney Jay E. Town announced after their convictions that ex-Balch partner Joel I. Gilbert and ex-Drummond executive David Roberson were the lone wolves of the North Birmingham Bribery Scandal, observers including law enforcement were stunned.

Most insiders (and the public in general) think the “lone wolves” theory is bull.

With the convictions, law enforcement officials wanted to expand the probe to look at more individuals and entities, but Town shut it down.

As we told the U.S. Department of Justice in our formal complaint:

According to a report  [in April of 2019]  in The Washington Post,Balch & Bingham…has insisted that Gilbert, as a partner, acted alone and would not have raised any flags as he deposited $360,000 into the Robinson foundation account because the money went out at a moderate pace over many months. Roberson later said that 21 Balch & Bingham attorneys ‘played at least some part’ in the anti-EPA campaign built on Robinson’s efforts.

And now according to a recent court document:

As part of its public relations campaign to defeat the EPA in North Birmingham and at the request of Joel Gilbert of Balch & Bingham, David Roberson, on behalf of Drummond Company, wrote a $5,000.00 check to be used to purchase 100 fifty dollar gift cards to Burlington Coat Factory to be used to purchase winter coats for kids in North Birmingham.

Unbeknownst to…Roberson as Joel Gilbert concealed this information from the Plaintiff, Balch and Oliver Robinson had agreed for Oliver to keep $2,500.00 out of the $5,000.00. Plaintiff did not learn of this hidden fact until his criminal trial in July of 2018. [The] $2,500.00 payment to Oliver Robinson [was used] as damaging evidence against Roberson in his criminal trial to help…obtain a conviction against him.

But worse than that are the revelations tied to Balch & Bingham’s paid consultants Trey Glenn and Scott Phillips currently facing a criminal ethics trial in Jefferson County, Alabama.

From the pleading:

Balch & Bingham…contracted with Trey Glenn … to lobby the Alabama Department of Environmental Management (or “ADEM”) to oppose the EPA in listing the North Birmingham site on the National Priorities List. The Balch invoices to Drummond seeking reimbursement for the payments to Trey Glenn and Scott Phillips were paid by Drummond General Counsel Blake Andrews and approved by Drummond CEO Mike Tracy.

Balch and Drummond Company concealed from Roberson that Drummond was paying Phillips (who was on the AEMC), pursuant to a contract with Balch, to lobby the entity in which the AEMC supervises (ADEM)….Glenn’s and Phillips’ invoices were being paid by Balch and reimbursed by Blake Andrews and Mike Tracy.

Why has Jay E. Town refused to interview the other 20 or so Balch attorneys involved in the North Birmingham Bribery Scandal?

Why has Town not investigated or charged Blake Andrews, Mike Tracy, Trey Glenn or Scott Phillips with alleged criminal conduct including possible money laundering and bribery?

We strongly believe the negligence and intentional refusal to pursue justice is all tied to Town’s unethical relationship with Mark A. Crosswhite.

At the end of the day, Jefferson County took the reigns and filed charges against Glenn and Phillips, when Town should have investigated them, and numerous other individuals and entities.

Town didn’t, and now he has paid the ultimate price: resignation.