Rizzo makes last-ditch bid for freedom

Robert Snell
The Detroit News

Detroit – Trash titan Chuck Rizzo made a last-minute request to be freed from jail Wednesday and return to his Bloomfield Hills mansion while awaiting sentencing in the Macomb County corruption scandal.


Rizzo needs to be released so he can help his legal team prepare for the March 13 sentencing, defense lawyers Thomas Green and David Debold wrote in a federal court filing.

The request came six days after U.S. District Judge Robert Cleland revoked Rizzo’s bond amid allegations he tried to tamper with an FBI witness.

The judge can release Rizzo and impose conditions, including home detention and monitoring of his phone calls, texts and emails, that will ensure the disgraced trash mogul does not contact anyone related to the criminal case, his lawyers argued.

“The court can find by clear and convincing evidence that such conditions make it unlikely Mr. Rizzo will pose a danger to the safety of other persons in the community,” the lawyers wrote.

Federal prosecutors oppose the request to release Rizzo.

Rizzo, the former CEO of Rizzo Environmental Services, surrendered to the U.S. Marshals Service on Tuesday as ordered by the judge. He is being held at the Wayne County Jail, according to an online inmate database.

Rizzo, 47, pleaded guilty in November, admitting he bribed Macomb County politicians and stole money from his trash-hauling company while building Rizzo Environmental Services into a regional powerhouse.

Rizzo violated bond by having two discussions with FBI witness Quintin Ramanauskas in December at MGM Grand Casino in Detroit, according to the government.

Prosecutors moved to revoke Rizzo’s bond, saying he berated Ramanauskas and blamed him for the potentially long prison sentence.


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