County corruption: Gabor hearing, sentencing delayed

3:19 PM, Jul 23, 2012   |    comments
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AKRON -- U.S. District Judge Sara Lioi has Court delayed the forfeiture hearing and the sentencing for convicted Cuyahoga County corruption defendant Michael D. Gabor Jr.

Lioi said the delay is "to afford defense counsel sufficient time to review the pre-sentence report with his client, and to provide the parties an opportunity to finalize an agreement as to forfeiture.

Attorney Leif Christman represents Gabor.

The hearing and sentencing was originally scheduled to start at 9:30 a.m. Friday.

The forfeiture hearing is now scheduled for 1:30 p.m. Aug. 1 and the sentencing for 9:30 a.m. Aug. 17.

However, Lioi did say that, if the defense and the prosecutors reach an agreement as to forfeiture, Lioi will proceed directly to sentencing at 1:30 p.m. Aug. 1.

Gabor's Ohio Public Employees Retirement System pension is the main issue in the forfeiture. He worked for former Cuyahoga County Auditor Frank Russo while he also drove former Cuyahoga County Commissioner Jimmy Dimora around.

After a 37-day trial, Gabor, 52, of Parma, was found guilty March 9 on 7 of 8 federal counts, including conspiracy, bribery and racketeering.

Like his convicted co-defendant Dimora, he was immediately taken into federal custody and has remained at the Northeast Ohio Correctional Center in Youngstown since March 9.

Gabor was found guilty on multiple charges, including RICO conspiracy, conspiracy to commit bribery, aiding and abetting bribery, and conspiracy to obstruct justice.

After the guilty verdicts, asking that Gabor be allowed to remain out on bond, Gabor's attorney Leif Christman emphasized Gabor's "close familial and community ties, and noting particularly that 'Mr. Gabor has lived in the same house with his mother and his wife and his son for 52 years, your honor. They're in Parma. He isn't going anywhere."

Despite that, the court remanded Gabor into federal custody. A request for a new trial was also denied.

Dimora, 57, of Independence, was convicted March 9 on 33 of 34 federal counts, including conspiracy, bribery and racketeering.

Lioi has since dismissed one of the counts involving John Valentin as "redundant" and Dimora is scheduled for sentencing at 9:30 a.m. July 30 on 32 of the 34 counts. His forfeiture hearing has already taken place.

Dimora was immediately taken into custody and has been held in the Northeast Ohio Correctional Center in Youngstown since that day.


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