AKRON -- A financial services adviser has pleaded guilty in federal court here to conspiracy on charges that he bribed two elected officials in Cleveland with fake palm trees.
Charles Randazzo, of Solon, head of the Twinsburg-based Financial Network of America, pleaded guilty Wednesday in U.S. District Court here in the bribing of former Cuyahoga County Commissioner Jimmy Dimora and former county Auditor Frank Russo to land retirement planning business with the county.
Randazzo allegedly gave more than $1,000 each to Dimora and Russo in 2004 to buy fake palm trees and allegedly gave Dimora food, wine and sports tickets.
Dimora has pleaded not guilty to bribery and awaits trial.
Russo pleaded guilty to bribery and was sentenced to nearly 22 years in prison.
The Plain Dealer of Cleveland reports that Randazzo made a plea deal with prosecutors and faces a prison sentence of eight to 14 months.