Developer not guilty in North Providence bribery

By News Staff

The Associated Press

A prominent developer has been found not guilty by a jury of bribing several town councilmen in North Providence to ease the way to build a supermarket.

A jury on Thursday found Richard Baccari and his company, Churchill & Banks, not guilty of bribery and conspiracy.

Prosecutors say Baccari paid $50,000 to three town councilmen in 2009 so they would approve a zoning change. His lawyer delivered the money.

Baccari smiled after the verdict was delivered, and his family gasped and cried.

Former Councilmen John Zambarano, Raymond L. Douglas III and Joseph Burchfield pleaded guilty to conspiracy, extortion and bribery. Baccari’s former lawyer, Robert Ciresi, went to trial and was found guilty by a jury of conspiracy, extortion and bribery. All four are still in prison.

(C) WLNE-TV 2014