Angelo Selva takes plea deal in Macomb County corruption case

Former lawyer pleads guilty to misprision of a felony

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MACOMB COUNTY, Mich. – A former lawyer pleaded guilty Monday for his part in the Macomb County corruption case that helped the former Rizzo Corporation get trash-hauling contracts.

Angelo Selva pleaded guilty to misprision of a felony.

"I'm guilty," Selva said. "I produced a false promissory note that he used to pay a fee. Basically, it was a bribe from the Rizzo Corporation."

Selva said he produced the note for his former best friend and employer, Dean Reynolds.

Reynolds was the Clinton Township trustee at the heart of the bribery scandal. He had a school called Universal Training Center, and up until a few weeks ago, Selvo served as the principal.

Selvo went before Judge Robert H. Cleland Monday to plead guilty for what amounts to knowing a crime had been committed and not reporting it to authorities in a timely fashion.

Selvo is a former attorney, and he admits he knew better. He said a dysfunctional relationship with Reynolds was the cause of the crime, as he'd been the best man at one of Reynolds' weddings.

"I was extremely manipulated by him," Selvo said. "I did not profit in anything I've done."

Selvo could be a damaging witness if the case ends up in court. He named Chuck Rizzo as a participant in the bribery and advised Reynolds shouldn't go to trial.

"Everybody's pleading," Selvo said. "He's the only one that's not pleading guilty. I mean, he's cutting his own throat."

Selvo said he is ready to testify and has all he needs to bury Reynolds.

Selvo could face about two years in federal prison for the plea, depending on where the case goes from here. He'll return for sentencing in October.

About the Authors:

Rod Meloni is an Emmy Award-winning Business Editor on Local 4 News and a Certified Financial Planner™ Professional.