Lawyer in RI Corruption Case Plans Not to Testify

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) – A lawyer charged in a bribery scheme involving three former North Providence town councilmen intends not to testify at his trial.

An attorney for Robert Ciresi also argues in a pre-trial memorandum filed Thursday that taped conversations involving one of the town councilmen, Joseph Zambarano, are inadmissible. Ciresi's
attorney, John Cicilline, says that's because Zambarano will not be available for cross-examination as a witness.

Prosecutors say Ciresi was a middleman in a pay-to-play scheme. He has pleaded not guilty.

The ex-councilmen – Zambarano, Joseph Burchfield and Raymond Douglas III – have pleaded guilty to soliciting tens of thousands of dollars in bribes in exchange for votes to approve zoning and licensing changes.

Edward Imondi, a North Providence developer, has pleaded guilty to facilitating one of the bribes.