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Giles Doesn't Get Probation. Case On Track For Trial

Was arrested in 2009 with former Mayor Eddie Perez

By Jeff Cohen

August 10, 2010

A state court judge has denied a special form of probation for Hartford politician Abraham Giles. Giles was arrested in connection with the corruption case of former Mayor Eddie Perez.

Giles and Perez were charged last year with trying to extort $100,000 from a city developer in a failed real estate deal. In June, Perez was found guilty on those and other charges. Now, itís Gilesí turn. In court, the former state representative, longtime businessman, and city political veteran was hoping to get a special form of probation called accelerated rehabilitation.

His attorney, John Kelly told the court that Giles deserved probation because the crime he allegedly committed wasnít a serious one, and because his 84-year-old client was unlikely to break the law again.

After reading from a few of the roughly 75 letters of support presented to the court, Kelley told Judge Julia Dewey that Giles works tirelessly, and honestly, for the benefit of the people in his community. And Giles told the court, "Iíve never tried to fleece anybody."

Itís a theme Giles touched on earlier this year in an interview with WNPR.

ďAs a matter of fact, Iím not a taker Iím a giver.Ē

But state prosecutor Christopher Alexy used that same interview with WNPR in court to show that Giles didnít deserve probation. Alexy said that Giles was such a good giver that, in 2008, he gave nearly half of the public money he got for his unsuccessful race for the legislature to friends and family. That, Alexy said, suggested that Giles would likely break the law again.

Judge Dewey Ė who also presided over the Perez trial Ė eventually denied the motion for accelerated rehabilitation, saying that the alleged crime was serious enough to merit a trial.

As he left court, Giles said he was disappointed. Asked what he would do next, he said:

ďI have no idea.Ē

A pre-trial hearing is scheduled for October 20th. Dewey said Giles could face 20 years in prison.

Reprinted with permission of Jeff Cohen, author of the blog Capital Region Report. To view other stories on this topic, search Capital Region Report at http://capitalregionreport.wordpress.com/.
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