Koons pleads guilty on all charges - Fox29 WFLX TV, West Palm Beach, FL-news & weather

Koons pleads guilty on all charges

Jeff Koons Jeff Koons

Posted by Sheli Muniz - email

PALM BEACH COUNTY(WFLX) - Another Palm Beach County commissioner goes down hard.

Update, WED 10 AM: Former Palm Beach County Commissioner Jeff Koons pleaded guilty Wednesday morning to charges of extortion, perjury and violating Florida's Sunshine Law.

The judge sentenced him to five years probation and fined him $11,500. Prosecutors say he tried to coerce the owners of a downtown West Palm Beach office building to drop opposition to an environmental restoration project.

Koons turned himself in at the Palm Beach County jail early Tuesday morning. A judge released him on his own recognizance later in the day.

He then resigned from his position as a county commissioner, and is not allowed to hold public office during his probation.

Koons has also apologized for his actions.

Previously: Jeff Koons, walking out of jail after being released on his own recognizance, declined to comment. Koons is accused of breaking the law to protect a pet project.

Prosecutors say Koons tried to coerce the owners of a downtown West Palm Beach office building to drop opposition to an environmental restoration project off the seawall.

Prosecutors say Koons communicated threats to spread misinformation and embarrass the owners.

Koons' lawyer David Roth says, "As only Jeff could state it, and, I quote, "I screwed up big time. And I blame no one, but myself."

Koons lawyer says the now-former commissioner is sorry and will ultimately plead guilty.

The extortion charge carries a maximum penalty of 15 years in prison, but sources tell us Koons may already have a deal allowing him to avoid prison or jail.

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