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Dimora trial: Feds, defense done with jury instructions

6:54 PM, Mar 13, 2012   |    comments
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AKRON -- Attorneys for Jimmy Dimora and federal prosecutors wrapped up jury instructions and set the schedule for Wednesday's forfeiture phase in his trial.

Starting Wednesday morning at 9 a.m., the jury will hear arguments and witnesses from both sides before going back to the jury room to decide what Jimmy Dimora may or may not have to forfeit to pay back to the government for the crimes he was convicted of Friday.

Dimora, 56, of Independence, was found guilty Friday on 33 of 34 federal counts, including bribery and racketeering, and prosecutors have asked that the jury require him to forfeit his home on Forestwood Drive, a home valued by Cuyahoga County at $438,900.

Defense attorneys argued that his entire house should not be subject to forfeiture for repaying the government following his conviction.

U.S. District Court Judge Sara Lioi, after talking with prosecutors and defense attorneys, anticipates opening arguments for both sides to take 10-15 minutes each, then the exhibits and witnesses will be presented, followed by closing arguments from both sides.

No word as to how long this will take, as the government has said that it expects to play at least 37 wiretapped calls that relate to activities that went on. The jury will deliberate and must reach a unanimous decision.

Tuesday morning, Dimora's wife, Lori, arrived at the courthouse with his attorneys Andrea and Bill Whitaker and entered through the front door.

Dimora himself, who has been held in federal custody since his conviction Friday, was brought to the courthouse by CCA employees, entering through a secure entrance in the rear of the building.

Clad Tuesday in a two-piece, orange-colored prison outfit, he arrived along with two other orange-clad prisoners just after 8 a.m. He was unshaven and appeared tired but his hair was neatly combed.

He changed out of the prison garb into a coat, shirt, tie and slacks before entering the courtroom.

The employees who brought Dimora to the courthouse were dressed in dark jackets with the letters "CCA" on them.

That "CCA" is an acronym for the private company that operates the Northeast Ohio Correctional Center, located on Hubbard Road in Youngstown, where federal prisoners are housed.

CCA operates many private facilities that house federal prisoners across the country.

In Ohio, it also operates the Lake Erie Correctional Institution in Conneaut. WKYC has confirmed that Dimora, as well as co-defendant Michael Gabor, are being held for now in the Youngstown facility.

Gabor, 52, of Parma, was convicted Friday on 7 of 8 counts and was also immediately taken into federal custody to await his sentencing.


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