Associated Press

New indictment against ex-Macomb prosecutor issued

DETROIT (AP) -- A federal grand jury on September 14, 2005 issued a new indictment against former Macomb County Prosecutor Carl Marlinga.

The six-count indictment accuses Marlinga of bribery, mail and wire fraud, making false statements to the Federal Election Commission and violating federal campaign finance laws.

Except for two counts of bribery, the charges are identical to those contained in the original indictment issued in April 2004, said Gina Balaya, a spokeswoman for the U.S. Attorney's Office.

An arraignment date was not immediately scheduled, Balaya said. Marlinga, who served as the prosecutor in Michigan's third-largest county from 1985 to 2004, was expected to remain free on bond, she said.

"Mr. Marlinga intends to vigorously defend the charges," said his attorney, Mark Kriger of Detroit. "He is looking forward to clearing his name."

The new indictment alleges that Marlinga, 58, used his position as prosecutor to influence the Michigan Supreme Court when it ordered a new trial for Jeffrey Moldowan of Warren, who had been convicted in 1991 of kidnapping and raping his ex-girlfriend. Marlinga did so in return for contributions to his unsuccessful 2002 congressional campaign, the indictment said.

The new indictment also accuses Marlinga of accepting contributions for helping St. Clair Shores real estate agent James Hulet, accused of drugging and raping a teenage girl.

Moldowan was acquitted at his new trial after spending more than 10 years behind bars. Hulet eventually pleaded guilty and was sentenced to two years in prison in January 2004.

The April 2004 indictment named as defendants Warren real estate agent Ralph Roberts and state Sen. Jim Barcia, D-Bay City, along with Marlinga. Roberts was accused of contributing to Marlinga's 2002 campaign in exchange for the prosecutor's intervention in the Moldowan case; Roberts employed Moldowan's sister at the time the indictment was issued. Barcia was accused of acting as a conduit used to avoid campaign contribution caps in Marlinga's U.S. House bid.

Charges against Roberts were dismissed at the government's request in June. Prosecutors dropped their case against Barcia in July.

Conviction on the mail and wire fraud charges is punishable by up to 20 years in prison, Balaya said. Bribery carries a maximum 10-year prison term; making false statements, five years; and campaign finance violation, one year.

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