The federal corruption trial of Brownsville school trustee Sylvia Atkinson is scheduled to start Monday. Atkinson is standing trial on charges of bribery and conspiracy contained in an 8-count indictment. She is accused of using her influence to coerce cash payments from school district contractors in exchange for ensuring school board approval of the contracts.
The 49-year-old Atkinson was arrested in December last year in an FBI sting in which an undercover agent posed as an employee of a film production company. At the time, Atkinson was a little more than halfway through her first term as a Brownsville school trustee.