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WC District Judge Indicted in Fraud Case

A Federal Grand Jury has indicted West Chester Magisterial Judge Mark Bruno for fraud related to traffic tickets.

According to a federal indictment unsealed Thursday, West Chester Magisterial Judge Mark Bruno allegedly "fixed" Philadelphia traffic tickets, along with 11 other judges, for people "with whom they were socially or politically connected."

Bruno presided over District Court 15-1-01 that primarily deals with offenses in the western part of the Borough of West Chester.

Bruno, along with the other judges indicted, stands accused of conspiracy to commit wire fraud and mail fraud.

According to the indictment, the judges allegedly involved would use their personal assistants and courtroom staff to make “consideration” requests to other judges for traffic tickets that needed to be “fixed.”

Judges would allegedly “fix” traffic tickets by dismissing them outright, holding “show” hearings with a not guilty verdict, reducing violations to also reduce fines and points assigned to a driver’s license or changing court dates in order to land a judge who would give preferential treatment.

The indictment also says that the process allegedly went on for years that there was a culture of “ticket-fixing.” 

According to the indictment, judges and staff allegedly took to using covert methods to hide the “consideration process.  Allegedly, documents were shredded, officials spoke in code and only certain staff members were used because they could be trusted not to reveal the scheme.

The Daily Local Reports:

According to the indictment, Bruno had filled in hearing cases for a week or two in Philadelphia Traffic Court. There, presumably, he came to know various people involved in the court administration.

The indictment states that on Jan. 14, 2011, Bruno contacted Fortunato N. Perri Sr., a Philadelphia judge who served on and off in traffic court since 1997, concerning “fixing a citation” received by a person identified only as “J.M.”

Perri agreed to “look into it” stating that he still had “a lot of connections” in the traffic court.

Perri also allegedly reminded Bruno that he was the one responsible for Bruno being allowed to work on the traffic court, presiding over cases. The conversation was captured on a wiretap of Perri’s phone.

There was no information in the indictment what became of the ticket, and what it was for.

The Daily Local also reports that Bruno has been suspended from court until the matter is resolved.

To read the story on the Daily Local's website please click on the link: here.

 

 

Assaggiatore February 02, 2013 at 05:51 PM
corrupt politicians need to be punished much more severely punished than you or I would be.
JEFFREY February 03, 2013 at 03:26 AM
I see two things here. One, people complaining about Patch just re-reporting news after it's been reported elsewhere. If it's not providing the service you expect, then don't use it. Period. Two, I always thought that Patch was posting events that many people want to comment on and you can't do that anywhere else; like I'm doing now. I don't know what the big deal is here, about Patch, that is. All the judges should be sentenced to the maximum allowed by law after taking in consideration that they are (were) judges and responsible for upholding the law equally, which, of course, they did not. Their sentences (after being found guilty) should be more due to their "position of trust" (that's an additional "legal" phrase to increase the sentence.
Robert Banner February 03, 2013 at 03:28 PM
You would think that any company would want to make sure that their readers/clients aren’t going else for service. That being said, you would think that Patch would have stuck with the real, original reporting that got it noticed in the first place. Now it’s just reposting what their competitors are doing and now Patch isn’t offering the same quality service it used to. It is for this reason that a lot of Patch fans have told me they stopped coming here. It shouldn’t be considered a crime when a reader/client wants the same great service that she was used to getting. When that company starts to offer sloppy work, people will complain.   And what do you mean not being able to comment? Just about every online newspaper (like the Daily Local) has a comment section. Patch isn’t offering anything new by allowing people to comment on stories.
secularis February 09, 2013 at 01:20 AM
Whether or not the reporting is original, the coverage is far superior to Daily Lack of News. Their crime section, for instance, contains outdated material and does not appear in their dropdown menu or on their mobile page. It almost seems like they are trying to downplay it. Also, here there are no annoying popup ads that scroll the page for you or block what you are trying to read.
Robert Banner February 10, 2013 at 03:59 PM
There is a difference between coverage and presentation. Coverage is reporting and this Patch is lacking on it's coverage of this case, while at least the Daily Local is diong original coverage of it. Patch used to do coverage like this.

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