BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WIAT) – The legal team for former State Rep. Oliver Robinson Jr. is speaking out for the first time since he entered into a plea agreement with the government, acknowledging that he accepted bribes from a Birmingham lawyer and an Alabama coal company executive, according to court documents.
“He never should have entered into the conduct that he did,” said Richard Jaffe, Robinson’s attorney. “He is very, very remorseful and hopes that one day they…his constituents, will find it in their heart to forgive him.”
Robinson has been charged with conspiracy, bribery, and honest services wire fraud. According to court documents, Robinson’s foundation received $360,000 as payment for using his position to pressure and advise public officials and citizens to oppose EPA action in North Birmingham.
“He’s not the evil person he’s perceived to be,” said Jaffe. “He has disappointed a lot of people. He is disappointed in himself, he has disappointed his family, his constituents, the public…and he is going to spend the rest of his life making up for it.” Jaffe alluded to the fact that everything in the plea agreement is accurate, but that there will be more to come out in the future that will explain what led to Robinson’s fall from grace–as he put it.
He also said that Robinson has already been involved in the case for the past 7 months, and that he will continue to be involved. Jaffe told CBS 42 that Robinson accepts “complete and total responsibility” for everything that he has done, and that he is anticipating serving time in federal prison. He described the former state representative as a “fallen hero” who “plans to be a hero again.”