CLEVELAND, OH (WOIO) - Jimmy Dimora is trying to get out of his 28 year prison sentence with a new argument about what is an "official act." Dimora was convicted in March of 2012 on 32 racketeering and corruption related charges. For years Dimora and his right-hand-man Frank Russo were being given cash, trips, dinners, home renovations and even prostitutes for doing favors for contractors looking for county work. Some favors were even done to get raises within the county and jobs for family members.
Dimora's lawyers are now trying to argue the jury in his case was given bad instructions when they were told what constitutes an "official act."
"Mr. Dimora contested at trial whether he solicited or received things of value knowing that they were given in exchange for official acts," the appeal states.
The argument is what is an "official act?" The appeal is arguing that "...whenever he did anything connected to his job as a commissioner, including attending meetings, calling public officials or business people, writing letters, taking notes, or directing his staff to do anything at all, such as scheduling a dinner..." that these are some how not official acts when connected to bribes.
This latest attempt is based on a Supreme Court case where they tossed out a conviction of former Virginia Governor Bob McDonnell because those duties listed above are not considered "official acts."
The appeal also argues that Dimora was never allowed to submit his ethics reports into court where they claim Dimora did list companies that were giving him items. Cleveland 19 News Reporter Paul Orlousky has reviewed those documents and while is some cases a company may be listed on Dimora's ethics report, the report does not include what was given or a value which in some case was in the tens or thousands of dollars.