Jim Traficant, 17th District congressman, has gathered information from four men he says shows why Craig Morford, the lead prosecutor in his racketeering case, should be removed.
Excerpts from an audiotaped conversation between the congressman and Richard Detore, former chief operating officer of U.S. Aerospace Group, a company J.J. Cafaro had an interest in:
Traficant: "This is Gestapo sh--. ..."
"[Phil] Chance said he never got the $13,000 from [mob boss Lenny] Strollo, but his attorney is the one that convinced him he had to find somebody that was a legitimate rich businessman and recommended Cafaro. ..."
"They've made mountains out of molehills. They've made half-truths into felonies. They've made loans into kickbacks and I've had it. ..."
"You know I wouldn't accept any money. You personally know that?"
Detore: "They said if I talked to anybody, they'd come arrest me immediately. ...
"I've gone to Plato Cacheris and asked Plato to go up to the public ethics group to bring this to their attention. ...
"J.J.'s proven to be a liar through and through. ..."
"I fear [for] my children's lives. I'm scared to death."
Excerpts from a letter from Henry A. DiBlasio, the congressman's former administrative assistant:
"I felt coerced and compelled to let them [federal agents] come up to our apartment. ... Two of them were real bruisers or maybe I should say big. ..."
"They made it clear that if I admitted what they brought up they would protect me. ..."
"At my age and in my poor health condition, I am surprised I did not collapse. ..."
"I also don't see how I could have shared my pay with you or anyone when I was losing income by being with you. ..."
Excerpts from an affidavit signed by John Innella:
"[Henry] Nemenz stated in my presence that when Morford interviewed him he had four assistants and the situation was intimidating. ..."
"[Nemenz] said that he basically told them what they wanted to hear. ..."
Excerpts from an affidavit signed by Patrick J. Naples, a contractor and part-time Lowellville police officer:
"My main purpose in calling Morford was to look into improprieties in a local municipal court. As the conversation went on, I told him about a drug distributor in Youngstown with connections with law enforcement. ..."
"It was later found out that Morford did not keep this conversation confidential."
Source: U.S. District Court