Public corruption has existed ever since the time of the Roman Empire, and likely long before. All that is required for the cancer of public corruption to gain a foothold in any society is: a) a society / sovereign country to form a government and to then establish a set of laws which the society shall adopt and follow ; b) a breach of the public trust and the laws by the government (public) officials elected, hired, or appointed to ensure such laws are followed ; c) the breach constitutes a condition whereby the public official (usually conspiring with private sector accomplices) solicits, demands, accepts, or agrees to receive ANYTHING OF VALUE in return for being influenced in the performance of their official public duties. For ease of discussion in this article, I shall simply use the most common description of corruption, “ Quid Pro Quo,” which means “something for something” when referring to such abuse of office / power.
What I have described above, is public corruption in its simplest form. One public servant, or perhaps a small group of public officials who abuse their office for personal gain. Sadly, this public corruption is absolutely routine in every city, county, and state within the United States. Every person can easily identify such a situation in the area where they live. For example, in one local county, about 2 years ago, the person who worked for the local District Attorney in a finance / controller position was charged and prosecuted for the theft of over $100K over several years. The person was influenced and in cahoots with another public servant, for their mutual benefit. Public sector purchasing agents who accept expensive gifts in exchange for contract awards are frequent offenders.Such behavior is commonplace.