ATLANTIC CITY, N.J. — Atlantic City Mayor Frank Gilliam announced on Thursday evening that he will resign after pleading guilty to a wire fraud charge.
Gilliam pleaded guilty to taking $87,215 from the AC Starz Basketball Club, a nonprofit that he founded in 2011.
“The residents of Atlantic City deserve immediate action to remove Mayor Gilliam, who demonstrated by his criminal conduct that he is not fit for office,” New Jersey Attorney General Gurbir S. Grewal said in a statement. “We have filed papers in state court seeking his swift removal. I commend the U.S. Attorney’s Office and FBI for securing this guilty plea. Together we must foster a culture of integrity in New Jersey government to safeguard the public interest.”
A charge to remove Gilliam as mayor of Atlantic City was filed by U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of New Jersey on Thursday, October 3. Shortly after, Gilliam announced his resignation.
He told individuals and others that the funds they gave to the nonprofit would be used to support a youth basketball team and/or school supplies.
According to court documents, Gilliam used the funds from the nonprofit for personal gain buying luxury designer clothing, expensive meals, and personal trips to various locations.
According to WHYY, City Council President Marty Small is expected to become acting mayor.
Gilliam will be sentenced on January 7, 2020, and could be facing a 20-year maximum sentence due to the wire fraud charge.