Evidence released from Jimmy Dimora's corruption trial includes photos, videos, documents

CLEVELAND - From a topless pool in Vegas to his pizza oven in Independence, the government released evidence it used to convict former political powerhouse Jimmy Dimora of corruption charges.

The evidence released to the media Tuesday ranged from photographs of the former Cuyahoga County commissioner's home, to surveillance photographs and video of Dimora's trip to Las Vegas with other men, including former friend and political ally, Frank Russo.

Some of the evidence was redacted, including photographs of Dimora at The Mirage Resort and Casino's infamous Bare Pool, a private topless pool.

The jury saw unedited versions of the same photographs during Dimora's corruption trial. The photos showed the former Democratic party chairman bare-chested and enjoying himself on a trip in 2008 that eventually would help lead to his conviction four years later.

Other evidence the jury saw from the trip included surveillance video from The Mirage, which showed contractor Ferris Kleem passing chips to Dimora at a blackjack table more than 20 times. The chips were valued at more than $3,000.

Kleem also picked up the tab for Dimora's sex and massage session with a woman named Suzanne Michaels. Her driver's license also was released to the media, partly redacted.

During the trial, the jury heard a wiretap in which Dimora thanked Kleem for the session.

"Was that the best or what?" Kleem asked Dimora.

"A little chatty, but good," Dimora said. "Thank you, though. It was excellent.  Thank you. Thank you."

Several FBI agents followed Dimora's group to Vegas -- some agents were even on the same plane as Dimora.

Images of Dimora's home improvements also were released to the media. The jury had seen all of the government's images over the course of the two-month long trial.

From a tiki hut to outdoor bathroom, granite work in the kitchen and an outdoor pizza oven, prosecutors convinced the jury Dimora received the home improvements as "things of value" from various contractors who also did business with the county.

Dimora's wife Lori still lives in the home. In a forfeiture agreement, the former commissioner lost his interest in the Independence home, valued at about $430,000.

In return, the government will not go after Lori Dimora's 50-percent interest in the home.

Also among the evidence released by prosecutors -- redacted receipts from the Holiday Inn on Rockside Road. That is where Gina Coppers met Dimora, arranged by guilty co-defendant, Michael Gabor.

Coppers met Dimora at Shula's Steakhouse and then would go to the hotel with Dimora. FBI wiretaps have her and Dimora scheming to get her a job. Coppers eventually landed a part-time job at Bedford Municipal Court for $24,000 a year, with benefits.

The FBI recorded 21 calls between Dimora and Coppers when they talked about finding her a job.

Another set of evidence released involves the Stonebridge complex on the West Bank of the Flats.

Dimora partied with his friends in condo unit 808, held poker parties and had sex meetings.

"Get the one with the thing in her tongue," Dimora said on a wiretap with former county worker, J. Kevin Kelley. He was referring to an escort with a pierced tongue.

The condo is a two-bedroom, two-bath, 1,186 square foot unit, with a skyline and river view, valued at $279,900.

Wiretaps were not released to the media.

Dimora is appealing his convictions. He faces more than 20 years when he is sentenced on July 25. Until sentencing, he is at a low-security federal prison near Youngstown.

NewsChannel5 is working to post all relevant evidence on newsnet5.com. Keep checking newnset5.com for access to this material.

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