Former Lorain official gets 2 years in Cuyahoga corruption probe

12:53 PM, Aug 16, 2012   |    comments
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AKRON -- Former Lorain County Community Development Director Sanford A. Prudoff will spend the next two years in prison for his role in the ongoing Cuyahoga County corruption investigation.

Prudoff, 68, of Lorain, was also ordered by U.S. District Judge Sara Lioi to pay restitution of about $300,000. That is in addition to the $48,000 in taxes he must pay for unreported income.

Prudoff pleaded guilty June 6 to conspiracy, making false statements to law enforcement officers and filing false income tax returns, corruption-related charges connected to Cleveland attorney Anthony O. Calabrese III.

U.S. Attorneys have accused Calabrese and Prudoff of plotting to fund and then take unearned money from the Alternatives Agency, a former not-for-profit halfway house on East 55th Street in Cleveland.

Calabrese was charged Sept. 22, 2011 in an 18-count indictment with racketeering and other corruption-related crimes, including bribery, conspiracy to commit fraud and tampering with a victim, witness or informant.

For now, jury selection in the trial of Calabrese is scheduled to begin on Feb. 13, 2013.

Prudoff received about $144,000 from July, 2003 to March 2006, according to the indictment. Calabrese had Alternatives Agency pay consultants nearly $550,000 from 2002 through 2008 for doing little or no work.

The Cuyahoga County corruption probe went public on July 28, 2008, when nearly 200 FBI and IRS agents simultaneously raided county government offices, homes of elected officials, private businesses and the homes of business owners and contractors.

Since that time, more than 60 people have been charged, many have pleaded guilty, some have gone to trial and others have already served their time in prison.

Former Cuyahoga County Commissioner Jimmy Dimora was sentenced to 28 years in prison on July 31 after being found guilty by a jury March 9 on 37 of 38 counts against him, including bribery, conspiracy, extortion and racketeering.

Former Cuyahoga County Auditor Frank Russo pleaded guilty to 21 counts of racketeering, conspiracy and bribery and was sentenced to 21 years and 10 months in prison. He remains free while he testifies against other defendants in the probe.


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