Witnesses for Burfoot’s defense continue testifying in corruption trial

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NORFOLK, Va. (WAVY) — The parade of witnesses for the defense continued inside Norfolk Federal Court Wednesday.

They weren’t on the stand very long, but they were backing up Andrew Sacks’ point that his client Anthony Burfoot didn’t come to them for any favors.

“I think, if anything, it has gone even better than you could have hoped,” Sacks said.

Burfoot’s public corruption trial is now three weeks in the books. His attorney is confident the jury will see his innocence.

“I think the government’s case, I think the witnesses failed to carry the day,” Sacks added.

The defense was up again Wednesday. There was a revolving door of witnesses, who all said Burfoot never asked them for any favors.

“We think it is important that the jury hear from all these different people,” Sacks said. “The lawyers, the council members and the city staff people would be in a position to know and to see it and saw nothing like that.”

Many have said Burfoot was “obsessed” over projects in his ward, even demanding which paint color or landscaping was used. Prosecutors believe that shows how controlling he was. However, Sacks says that was just because his client cared about his constituents.

“I think these witnesses, one by one, are showing exactly what we said — that Anthony didn’t do anything wrong,” Sacks said.

Burfoot is accused of taking money and gifts while on council in exchange for official acts. Wednesday, during cross examination, former Norfolk Assistant City Manager Stanley Stein said Burfoot should not have been involved with choosing the developers of Broad Creek. Prosecutors showed paperwork that says he did. Sacks says the defense will prove otherwise.

“What the jury does, that is up to them, and I respect that, but I think we are doing all that can be done,” Sacks said.

The defense called up to 15 witnesses in two days. Sacks tells 10 On Your Side he has 25 more he could potentially ask to take the stand.