Former Charlotte Mayor Patrick Cannon was arrested March 26 on federal charges that, among other acts, he accepted cash from undercover agents in return for promising to use his political influence to benefit purported real-estate investments related to a phony $100-million mixed-use project and transit-related developments, according to the government's complaint 

According to the complaint, in July 2013, Cannon met with undercover FBI agents posting as foreign investors looking to develop a mixed-use project in Uptown Charlotte. At that time, Cannon stated that he would "specifically provide special treatment" related to permitting, zoning and government funding issues that the project developers might encounter.

"Cannon stated that he would speak to building inspectors, the chairman of the county board of commissioners, the county manager and the head inspector over building standards on behalf of the (undercover agents') projects," the complaint reads.

The Associated Press posted its video of the Charlotte city council's press conference held the day of Patrick Cannon's arrest.

In December 2013, the FBI complaint states that Cannon offered to help the "investors" profit from a future city light-rail line project, known as the Gold Line. "Cannon agreed to assist (the undercover agent) with information about the proposed construction schedule for the Gold Line extension so that (the agent) could time his purchase of real property on the Gold Line."

Cannon provided this assistance to the purported real-estate developers in return for cash contributions to his campaign for mayor. Cannon, who resigned after being arrested, allegedly accepted "over $48,000 in cash, airline tickets, a hotel room and the use of a luxury apartment." In his last meeting with undercover agents, Cannon accepted a $20,000 cash payment.

The Charlotte Observer has numerous stories on this breaking new story, including this one.