Chesterton Tribune

 
 

Former EC school official gets five months in prison for accepting a bribe

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The former treasurer of the School City of East Chicago has been sentenced to five months in federal prison after pleading guilty to receipt of a bribe by an agent of a local government receiving federal funds, the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of Indiana said.

Last week, Francisco Ramirez, 50, was sentenced to five months in prison and one year of supervised release, the latter to include five months of home detention, the U.S. Attorney’s Office said.

Ramirez was also ordered to pay $4,108.50 in restitution.

According to court documents, Gerardo Lozano, operator of Greentree Builders, performed free home improvement work at Ramirez’s residence in return for contracts and payments to Greentree from the School City of East Chicago.

“Ramirez created the work and made sure that the School City could pay for it,” the U.S. Attorney’s Office said. “In the end, it cost the School City more than $173,000. Ramirez handled almost all of the paperwork, including the payment claim forms. The agreement also called for Lozano to overbill the School City.”

Lozano, for his part, pleaded guilty to paying a bribe to a local government official receiving federal funds. He was sentenced last month to 21 months in prison and one year of supervised release and ordered to make restitution of $5,136.

 

Posted 2/4/2013