King pleads guilty to extortion

Former Jersey City council candidate Jimmy King, a veteran of the Hudson County political scene with a deep resume in government, pleaded guilty today to accepting bribes from a federal informant posing as a developer.

King, 67, took two $5,000 cash payments from FBI informant Solomon Dwek during his unsuccessful campaign for a Ward C council seat earlier this year and agreed to accept more money after the election. He pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to commit extortion and is set to be sentenced on January 5.

“Although we are pleased with the outcome in the case against Mr. King, we cannot declare victory in our fight against public corruption,” said FBI Special Agent in Charge Weysan Dun. “We continue to ask the public to contact us with information about corruption, no matter how insignificant one may think it is. We will treat every lead with confidentiality and urgency.”

Until his arrest in July, King ran the Jimmy King Civic Association. He is a former Hudson County undersheriff, Hudson County Director for Public Resources, Executive Director of the Jersey City Parking Authority and Chairman of the Jersey City Incinerator Authority.

According to the criminal complaint against King, Dwek mentioned an application for a fictitious Garfield Avenue development project he planned.

“I don’t care what it is. It’s done,” King told him. “[n]ame it. Done.”

King has agreed to pay $7,500 in restitution. He faces a maximum of 20 years in prison and a $250,000 fine.

King made headlines between the May municipal election and the July corruption bust for challenging the residency of the election’s winning candidate, Nidia Lopez. Although his name still appears on the latest court documents, King has passed that case on to good government activist Norrice Raymaker, who finished behind him in the race.

King pleads guilty to extortion