Federal attorneys argued for dropped charges in Manzo case to be restored

JERSEY CITY AND BEYOND — Government attorneys were in a federal appeals court in Tuesday morning arguing that dismissed charges against former state Assemblyman Louis Manzo (pictured) and his brother Ronald should be reinstated.
Four counts of extortion and attempted and extortion charges were dropped in May against the Manzo brothers in connection the government’s Operation Bid Rig sting. The ruling by U.S. District Judge Jose Linares found that Louis Manzo, a 2009 Jersey City mayoral candidate, did not hold public office, and neither did his brother, a political consultant, at the time of the crimes they allegedly committed. Both had been charged under the Hobbs Act, a federal law barring government officials from using their positions to obtain payments.
Rebekah Carmichael, spokesperson for the N.J. United States Attorney’s Office, said the judges could take “months” to render a decision.
Louis Manzo issued a statement after today’s hearing ended that stated in part:
“This appeal was merely a specious exercise by the government. A distraction intended to provide cover for a group of United States Attorneys who used the power of their office for personal gain while denying others due process.” – Ricardo Kaulessar

© 2000, Newspaper Media Group