CLEVELAND — Former Cuyahoga County commissioner Jimmy Dimora is asking for contributions from his friends as he prepares to appeal his conviction on more than 30 corruption charges.
Lawyer David Moore confirms that the Laurentum Group, a legal firm in Uniontown, has been retained for the specific purpose of trying to raise money to pay for the appeal.
Within the past month, friends and supporters have been sent a letter signed by Dimora that reads: “I need your help in appealing my wrongful conviction in hopes of clearing my good name.”
The letter continues: “It is my genuine belief that I deserve a fighting chance in appealing my conviction.”
Dimora was sentenced on Tuesday to 28 years in prison. The Federal Bureau of Prisons will now begin the process of evaluating his case to determine where he will serve that sentence.
A spokesman for the department says they normally try to place prisoners at an institution within 500 miles of their declared home. They also will take into consideration what the Bureau calls the inmate’s “sphere of influence.”
Dimora’s attorneys have asked for him to be transferred to a federal medical facility in North Carolina that houses inmates of various security levels.
It is a process that the Bureau says normally takes about 30 days.
During his sentencing on Tuesday, Dimora insisted that he never did anything to harm the taxpayers of Cuyahoga County.
It is a statement he repeats in his letter to supporters.
“Over the past 4 years, I have had the unfortunate opportunity to learn just how extremely expensive it is to defend yourself against the government’s jabs and punches,” Dimora writes.
“I cannot continue to fight this alone, which is why I am asking for your help clearing my name and increasing my chances of success, by sending a contribution of $100, $250, $500, $1,000 or any other amount you feel is proper…” Dimora asks.
Moore declined to say how much money has already been raised.
“What we believe is important is that our firm, the Laurentum Group, is helping Mr. Dimora in a very limited capacity,” Moore told Fox 8, saying they are simply “helping (Dimora’s) family, reaching out with any moral support and financial support they can. Any contributions that we raise will be forwarded to legal counsel,” he concluded.
Moore stressed that all donations they collect are held in trust.