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Court upholds conviction of ex-Ohio official

Wednesday, April 30, 2014

CINCINNATI (AP) — A former county official’s conviction and 28-year sentence in a wide-ranging public corruption case were upheld today by a federal appeals court.

The 6th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Cincinnati affirmed former Cuyahoga County Commissioner Jimmy Dimora’s 2012 conviction and sentence on 32 bribery-related offenses.

Dimora had asked the court to drop four charges and grant a new trial on the remaining ones. His attorney argued the trial judge should have allowed jurors to see ethics reports the attorney said would have proven the items that Dimora received were gifts and not bribes.

Prosecutors had argued the reports were incomplete and described only relationships with people who were bribing Dimora, not details or dollar figures.

The three-judge appeals panel found the trial judge erred in ruling that the reports were inadmissible hearsay, but it said any error was harmless because “the government produced overwhelming evidence against Dimora.”