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Trenton mayor Tony Mack convicted of bribery, fraud
Trenton mayor Tony Mack convicted of bribery, fraud

Trenton mayor Tony Mack convicted of bribery, fraud

Mayor Tony Mack was convicted of all six federal corruption charges Friday in U.S. court. His brother, Ralphiel Mack, was convicted of three of the six bribery and extortion charges both were tried for.

The unanimous verdict came in at 5:30 p.m., following a full day of deliberations in which the jury sent out three questions for U.S. Michael A. Shipp.

Mack didn’t say a word as he walked from the federal courthouse in the capital city. His attorney, Mark Davis, said jurors made the wrong decision and that they’re looking at an appeal.

“That was the wrong verdict that the jury reached,” Davis said. “Clearly they believed testimony that they should have never believed.”

Mack and his brother, Raphiel, were nabbed in a government sting where officials said the men conspired to accept $119,000 in cash and valuables in exchange for the development of an automated parking garage.

Prosecutors say the men were planning to direct $100,000 from the sale of a city-owned vacant lot on East State Street into their own cauffers.

Davis, the mayor’s lawyer, had argued Mack was the victim of government investigators who used the fake land deal and a slick-talking middleman to ensnare him.

Raphiel Mack was also found guilty on three counts of extortion and accepting bribes.

Joseph Giorgianni, a sandwich shop owner who was also involved in the scheme, pled guilty to two counts of extortion in the months before the trial began. The 64-year-old told authorities he handled the bribes for Mack and gave him about $8,000 in cash.

Mack, a Democrat who was elected in 2010, has remained in office since his arrest more than two years ago.

With the conviction, Mack will be removed from office and Trenton City Council President George Muschal will replace him. He was sworn in on Friday night.

Muschal will remain as mayor for 30 days, but can stay on for the remainder of Mack’s term if the city’s council votes him into the post.

“This protracted case has resulted in an unfortunate and unfair distraction for the City of Trenton for far too long,” Mercer County Executive Brian M. Hughes said in a statement. “It has put a dark cloud over Trenton, and frankly, the entire region. Justice has been served and now it is time to move on, and to look forward to a brighter future.”

Both Tony and Raphiel Mack are currently out on bail. A sentencing hearing is scheduled for May 14. He faces up to 40 years in a federal prison.

Since 2000, mayors of Newark, Camden, Paterson, Perth Amboy, Hoboken, Passaic, Asbury Park, Orange and Hamilton have been convicted or pleaded guilty in corruption cases.


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