HARTFORD —— Former Mayor Eddie Perez's appellate case will not be heard by a judge until at least February, an appellate court clerk said Tuesday.
Although the case was put on a court docket that reads "court dates are expected to be Jan. 2 to 23," the clerk said the case was "subject to assignment" between those dates, not actually assigned. She said it would likely show up on the docket sometime in February.
Perez was found guilty in June 2010 of receiving a bribe, accessory to the fabrication of evidence, conspiracy to fabricate evidence, conspiracy to commit first-degree larceny by extortion and criminal attempt to commit first-degree larceny by extortion. He was sentenced in September 2010 to three years in prison.
Perez, who is free on bond, resigned a week after the convictions.
Attorneys for the former mayor filed their final appellate brief in September, saying that Perez's two criminal cases — one involving bribery and the other extortion — should not have been consolidated into one trial. Attorneys also argue his convictions should be reversed and that he should get two new, separate trials.
Prosecutors charged that Perez accepted discounted home-improvement work from a city contractor, Carlos Costa, in exchange for Perez's help to hold onto a $5.3 million contract to reconstruct Park Street, a job mired in problems.
Costa and other witnesses testified during the trial that Perez assigned Charles Crocini, director of capital projects in the mayor's office, to run interference for Costa and try to settle $1.7 million in claims from Costa for extra payments beyond the contract price, even though public works officials and an expert consultant said that most of the claims lacked merit.
The prosecution also asserted that Perez wanted North End politician Abraham Giles to be paid to vacate a parking lot on a sliver of land crucial to a developer's plans for a condominium and shopping center.
Reprinted with permission of the Hartford Courant.
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