Ex-Niles auditor in court on theft in office and bribery case


Former longtime auditor for the city of Niles Charles Nader, 64, was arraigned today in Trumbull County Common Pleas Court in connection with the theft in office and bribery case against ex-Mayor Ralph Infante and his wife, Judy.

Nader stood before visiting judge Patricia Cosgrove for a brief hearing, pleading not guilty. The $25,000 personal-recognizance bond set for him earlier was continued. Nader was led from the courtroom after the hearing to be booked and fingerprinted at the county jail.

Nader faces nine criminal counts — theft, two counts of tampering with records and unlawful interested in a public contract.

The rest of the hearing involved pushing back the dates for defense attorneys to file motions in the case and for special prosecutors to reply to them. Those deadlines are now late in September and on Oct. 13. All three defendants are scheduled to go on trial Dec. 11.

The indictments allege the former auditor used a city computer for his private tax-preparation business and with failing to list income from a tax client who was also doing business with the city.

Misdemeanor charges include making false statements to two state auditors and accepting compensation from a company that was “seeking to do business” with the city.

Nader was auditor from 2006 to 2015. He’s indicted along with Infante, 61, who is facing 41 criminal counts, and his wife, Judy, 68, who is facing seven counts of tampering with records for allegedly failing to report and trying to conceal “income from gambling and other sources.”

Nader resigned as auditor in September 2015, a few months before his term was to have expired and nearly a year after the city was declared in fiscal emergency by the state auditor.

Infante and his wife entered not guilty pleas at an earlier hearing, and both are free on bond.

The indictments allege Ralph Infante illegally received nearly $200,000 in unreported cash, income and gifts, some of it to provide people with jobs with the city. The allegations date back to the beginning of his term as mayor in 1992.

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