County corruption: Vince Russo reports to prison

1:04 PM, Feb 24, 2011   |    comments
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CLEVELAND -- Vincent Russo, the son of former Cuyahoga County Auditor Frank Russo, turned himself in to U.S. Marshals Thursday morning to begin his 18-month prison term, according to his attorney.

Russo, 31, pleaded guilty to bribery charges on Sept. 17 and was sentenced Dec. 10 to 18 months in prison.

The court allowed Russo to remain free until after his wife gave birth to their twins in late December.

He was to report to U.S. Marshals in January but the federal court had not yet sent over the required paperwork by then. The paperwork was finalized earlier this month.

Frank Russo pleaded guilty to 21 counts of bribery in September and was sentenced Dec. 10 to 22 years in prison. At the time, he was allowed to remain free until May 2011 for the births of his grandchildren.

In Frank Russo's plea agreement with prosecutors, it was agreed that his son Vince would also plead guilty but not be prosecuted for any other offenses.

On July 28, 2008, almost 200 FBI and IRS agents raided offices and businesses throughout Cuyahoga County. The corruption probe has seem almost 40 defendants and many are already serving prison terms.

Vince Russo was charged with four counts including bribery, conspiracy, extortion and conspiracy to obstruct justice.

Vince Russo was accused of delivering two televisions to the home of Santina Klimkowski, a former Maple Heights School Board member, and instructing Klimkowski to deliver one of the sets to Christopher D. Krause, the treasurer of the Maple Heights School District at the time.

The TVs were said to be bribes in exchange for contracts awarded to Vincore LLC, a company that employed Russo's company.


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