FEDERAL TRIAL JUROR PLEADS GUILTY TO SOLICITING BRIBE
Wifredo A. Ferrer, United States Attorney for the Southern District of Florida, and John V. Gillies, Special Agent in Charge of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), Miami Field Office, announced that Italo Campagna, 55, a former juror in a federal criminal trial, has pled guilty to charges of soliciting a bribe in exchange for agreeing to convince fellow jurors to vote not guilty in a criminal case. Sentencing has been scheduled for April 4, 2012. At sentencing, the defendant faces a statutory maximum term of imprisonment of 15 years.
According to the criminal complaint previously filed in this case, Campagna was a sworn trial juror in the federal criminal case of United States v. Arturo Marrero, pending in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida, Case No. 10-60244-CR-COOKE. On October 4, 2011, Campagna approached the father of the defendant outside the Courthouse in Miami and stated that he had information about the case. Campagna gave the father a piece of paper with a telephone number on it, but did not identify himself by name or explain that he was a juror.
Later that afternoon, the defendant’s brother called Campagna and arranged to meet with him in Miami Beach to discuss the case. At that meeting, Campagna revealed to the brother that he was a juror in the case and that some of his fellow jurors were inclined to convict. Campagna offered to persuade other jurors to vote not guilty in exchange for a payment of between $50,000 and $100,000. The brother expressed skepticism at Campagna’s claims and said that he would get back to him the next day.
The next day, on October 5, 2011, the brother began to cooperate with the FBI and made a recorded telephone call to Campagna to follow up on his discussions of the day before. The brother asked whether Campagna was still willing to help influence the outcome of the case, and Campagna answered yes. The brother then proposed a meeting at the same time and place to discuss money and other details. Campagna agreed. The brother stated that he had been able to get some money together but wanted to negotiate a final price.
Later that day, the brother participated in a recorded meeting with Campagna. Campagna reiterated that he could influence the jury and prevent a guilty verdict. The brother and Campagna then began to negotiate over price, and eventually settled on $20,000 as a deposit. Campagna followed the brother to his vehicle to obtain the cash payment. The brother then handed Campagna what appeared to be a bundle of cash in a brown paper bag. At that point, Campagna was arrested.
This case was investigated by the FBI-led Miami Area Corruption Task Force, which includes the City of Miami Police Department and the Hialeah Police Department and is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Brian K. Frazier.
A copy of this press release may be found on the website of the United States Attorney's Office for the Southern District of Florida at http://www.usdoj.gov/usao/fls. Related court documents and information may be found on the website of the District Court for the Southern District of Florida at http://www.flsd.uscourts.gov or on http://pacer.flsd.uscourts.gov.