Tags: fbi | arrest | florida | mayors | graft

FBI Agents Arrest Two Florida Mayors in Graft Probe

Tuesday, 06 Aug 2013 06:23 PM

 

FBI agents arrested two Florida mayors at their City Hall offices on Tuesday on corruption charges, alleging the two men separately accepted bribes in connection with purported government contracts awarded to their Miami-area towns.

Manuel Marono, the mayor of Sweetwater, and Michael Pizzi, the mayor of Miami Lakes, both appeared in Miami federal court hours later. Each faces a charge of conspiracy to commit extortion.

"This is a sad day for South Florida," said Wifredo Ferrer, the U.S. attorney for Florida's Southern District. "This betrayal of our public trust is intolerable."

Two lobbyists were also charged in the case and are expected to surrender to authorities on Wednesday, Ferrer said.

The arrests came after a two-year investigation prompted by a tip, authorities said. During an undercover operation, FBI agents posed as officials at a fictitious, Chicago-based not-for-profit company that claimed to help local governments obtain federal grants.

Both Marono and Pizzi allegedly agreed to arrange for municipal approvals to help the company win the grant money in exchange for bribes and kickbacks, according to a criminal complaint.

Marono, who was elected mayor of Sweetwater in 2003, allegedly accepted more than $40,000 in bribes. Pizzi, a lawyer and former federal probation officer serving his second term as Miami Lakes mayor, received $6,750, officials said.

Florida Governor Rick Scott signed an executive order on Tuesday suspending both men from their public offices.

Candidates for municipal office in both towns do not run under a party affiliation.

If convicted, both men could face up to 20 years in prison.

© 2015 Thomson/Reuters. All rights reserved.

Around the Web
Join the Newsmax Community
Please review Community Guidelines before posting a comment.
>> Register to share your comments with the community.
>> Login if you are already a member.
blog comments powered by Disqus
 
Email:
Country
Zip Code:
Privacy: We never share your email.
 
Hot Topics
Follow Newsmax
Like us
on Facebook
Follow us
on Twitter
Add us
on Google Plus
Around the Web
Top Stories
You May Also Like

Couple Lose Court Case in Abortion Based on Lab Error

Thursday, 29 Jan 2015 10:49 AM

A New England couple who aborted a four-month-old fetus in 2009 after early genetic tests suggested disorders in the fet . . .

Study: Chances of Dying in a Car Crash Plunged Over 3 Years

Thursday, 29 Jan 2015 10:08 AM

Safety researchers say the chances of dying in a crash in a late-model car or light truck fell by more than a third over . . .

Medical Supercomputer Isn't a Pacemaker, IBM Tells Congress

Thursday, 29 Jan 2015 08:45 AM

Watson, an artificial intelligence technology that IBM wants to sell to help doctors diagnose diseases, will largely esc . . .

Most Commented

Newsmax, Moneynews, Newsmax Health, and Independent. American. are registered trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc. Newsmax TV, and Newsmax World are trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc.

 
NEWSMAX.COM
America's News Page
©  Newsmax Media, Inc.
All Rights Reserved