Ex-N. Providence official seeks to toss conviction
PROVIDENCE, R.I.—A former North Providence councilman serving more than five years in prison for his role in a bribery and extortion scheme is asking a court to vacate his conviction because he says he was mentally ill and suicidal when he agreed to plead guilty.
The Providence Journal reports ( http://bit.ly/uGz8Jy) that John Zambarano says his lawyer, Thomas G. Briody, provided him with ineffective counsel because Briody did not adequately investigate his mental health problems before advising him to plead guilty.
Briody declined to comment to the newspaper on Zambarano's comments about his legal work.
Zambarano admitted to soliciting bribes from local developers in exchange for favorable votes on zoning and licensing changes and lying to a federal agent. Zambarano also pleaded guilty in a separate $40,000 home insurance scheme.
Information from: The Providence Journal, http://www.providencejournal.com