AKRON, Ohio - Defense attorney Andrea Whitaker on Friday morning continued her attack on the mental health and corruption testimony of the government's star witness, J. Kevin Kelley.
Whitaker began by questioning Kelley about his medications and whether he had taken them before testifying. She then posed a number of scattered and disjointed lines of questioning, but did not draw any new major testimony discrepancies prior to the morning break.
Whitaker questioned Kelley on his consulting business, his financial arrangment with the Alternatives Agency, reimbursements for airfares Kelley purchased for the Las Vegas group, and other matters.
Kelley appeared attentive and quick, but evasive at times, in his responses. At several points, he stated he did not recall details about questions Whitaker asked about in her cross-examination.
In one line of questioning, Whitaker asked Kelley about a party in Solon at the home of Charles Randazzo in which a female exotic dancer was brought in from Toledo. In what appeared to be an effort to get Kelley to say the woman danced for more people than simply Dimora, Whitaker asked Kelley who all the woman, known as Egypt, danced for while at the house.
"I assumed she was performing acts of a sexual nature. She didn't just come and hang out.," Kelley replied after saying she danced only for Dimora and co-defendant Michael Gabor.
Kelley did reveal during Whitaker's cross-examination that he met with the FBI more than 200 times once he agreed to cooperate with federal officials. Earlier in the week, Kelley said he agreed to cooperate the very first day he was taken into custody during the July 2008 FBI raids of county offices.
Whitaker also got Kelley to acknowledge that Dimora and his friends, who met frequently, did not refer to themselves as the "A-Team" as Kelley previously implied.
"Marty Sweeney started that," Kelley said, referring to Cleveland City Council President Martin Sweeney. He said Sweeney distinguished Dimora's group that met frequently as the "A-Team," while referring to others such as himself who attended less frequently as the "B-Team."
Kelley also acknowledged to Whitaker that he had more than 150 conversations with Plain Dealer reporter Joe Wagner to provide information on individuals and relationships in the county government. Kelley said he and Wagner were friends "for years" prior to Wagner retiring from the newspaper.
U.S. District Court Judge Sara Lioi stopped the trial for a lunch break shortly after noon. Whitaker is expected to resume cross-examination of Kelley at that time.
Leif Christman, attorney for defendant Michael Gabor, said Kelley has been on the stand "spewing his nonsense" and he was anxious to cross-examine Kelley.
Dimora and Gabor have maintained their innocence of all federal charges.
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