DALLAS -- A figure connected to the corruption case against former Mayor Ray Nagin is about to face his own federal trial in Dallas on Thursday.
Brian Marshall of Tampa, Fla., is charged with fraud for allegedly causing fake business activity to be reported to investors in a publicly traded company. That company, Home Solutions of America, was founded and run by Frank Fradella, one of the government's star witnesses against Nagin.
Marshall was CEO of Fireline Restoration, a subsidiary of Home Solutions. Fireline owned the private jet that another partner of his and Fradella’s, businessman Aaron Bennett, used to take Nagin and his wife, Seletha, to Chicago and Las Vegas in January 2007. Bennett said he introduced Nagin to Fradella in Las Vegas as a part of his efforts to help the Nagins with their family countertop business, Stone Age LLC.
In the separate New Orleans corruption case, the feds allege that Fradella helped Nagin get Stone Age an exclusive contract installing countertops for the Home Depot and supplied Nagin’s family firm with truckloads of free granite. Court documents show that the granite was delivered from Tampa, and sources have confirmed that Marshall’s company, Fireline, was used to deliver the granite to the Nagins.
Marshall also joined with Fradella and developer Michael Samuel to try to fix up the old Market Street power plant on the New Orleans riverfront. Another developer claimed in a 2010 email that Nagin was backing that project in exchange for “a piece” of the deal.
Samuel then allegedly funneled $100,000 to Nagin for “green energy consulting” in 2010 and 2011, after he left office.
Nagin is charged with wire fraud for accepting that money, plus $12,500 more paid directly by Fradella.
Fradella, who pleaded guilty in 2012 to bribing Nagin, is on the government's witness list to potentially testify against Marshall in Dallas next week.
The U.S. Attorney’s Office in Dallas charged Marshall with two fraud counts last year but agreed Tuesday to prosecute him on just one count.