MACOMB COUNTY, Mich. – The owner of multiple towing companies across southeast Michigan pleaded guilty Wednesday to conspiring to commit bribery in connection with a municipal towing contract in Clinton Township.
Gasper Fiore, 57, of Grosse Pointe Shores, admitted to conspiring to pay bribes to Clinton Township Trustee Dean Reynolds to obtain a contract with the township and admitted to giving cash bribes to Reynolds to select Fiore's company, according to the US Attorney's Office.
Fiore paid the bribes through Chuck Rizzo, former CEO of Rizzo Environmental Services, who was cooperating with federal law enforcement at the time of the bribe payments. Rizzo pleaded guilty to bribery and embezzlement charges Nov. 9.
"Today's guilty plea is a significant blow to corruption in southeast Michigan," said acting U.S. attorney Daniel L. Lemisch. "Bribery subverts representative government, and this conviction demonstrates that such conduct, by either public officials or bribe payers, will not tolerated."
United States attorneys said Fiore built his massive towing company with bribes.
Fiore was originally charged with four counts of bribery, conspiracy and wire fraud.
Officials said Rizzo needed and wanted help illegally taking money from the Rizzo trash-hauling firm, which at the time was largely owned by a hedge fund. Fiore was accused of overbilling Rizzo for towing feeds and kicking money back to Rizzo that allowed him to build a sprawling mansion and pay bribes for Rizzo Environmental Services to win garbage-hauling contracts.
Others have taken pleas in the Macomb County corruption case.
A sentencing date has been set for May 1, 2018.