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Fri. 11:27 a.m.: Bozanich, Marchionda take corruption plea deals

YOUNGSTOWN — Nearly two years after being indicted in a 101-count criminal indictment, ex-Youngstown Finance Director David Bozanich and downtown developer Dominic Marchionda agreed to plea deals this morning to avoid a trial.

Bozanich of Youngstown pleaded guilty in Mahoning County Common Pleas Court to one count of bribery, one count of tampering with records, all felonies, and two counts of unlawful compensation of a public official, misdemeanors. The unlawful compensation counts were initially bribery and the tampering count was reduced from aggravated theft.

He was initially charged with 18 felonies.

Marchionda of Poland pleaded guilty to four felony counts of tampering with records.

Marchionda was initially charged with 66 felonies.

Ten of Marchionda’s affiliated companies that did work on the Flats at Wick student-house complex as well as the Erie Terminal Place and Wick Towers downtown-housing projects were also indicted Aug. 30, 2018.

As part of today’s plea deal, the charges against eight of the companies were dismissed.

U.S. Campus Suites, which was involved in the development of Erie Terminal, pleaded guilty to a felony county of receiving stolen property for illegally obtaining between $75,000 and $150,000 in money from the city of Youngstown.

Rubino Construction Inc. pleaded guilty to an amended count of unauthorized use of property, a felony. It had been charged with receiving stolen property related to money taken âby conversion or deceptionã from the state for the Wick Towers project.

Bozanich was accused of illegally giving assistance to people, including Marchionda through an associate, who sought public funding for economic-development purposes in exchange for money, golf fees, meals and trips exceeding $125,000.

Marchionda was charged with misspending $600,000 in city funds on personal items in addition to misusing money obtained by the city, state and federal governments for the three downtown projects.

Former Youngstown Mayor Charles Sammarone was also indicted Aug. 30, 2018, on 14 counts. He took a plea agreement March 16 to two felony counts of tampering with records. He received five years of probation and 30 days of community service.

Also, Raymond Briya, a former MS Consultants Inc. chief financial officer, struck a deal with prosecutors and had planned to be a key witness in the cases against those who pleaded guilty. Briya pleaded guilty Sept. 10, 2019, to two counts of attempted bribery as well as one count each of tampering with records, grand theft and obstructing justice, all felonies.

Read Saturday’s Vindicator for more details.

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