- Associated Press - Wednesday, May 14, 2014

CLEVELAND (AP) - The mayor of Youngstown and a county officeholder were indicted Wednesday on corruption charges including bribery, conspiracy and tampering with records.

The indictment outlines a series of illegal activities related to a plan to move county offices in the northeastern Ohio city.

State Attorney General Mike DeWine and Cuyahoga County Prosecutor Timothy McGinty announced the indictments against Youngstown Mayor John McNally and Mahoning County Auditor Michael Sciortino. DeWine said the charges are related to activities that began in 2005 and continued for four years.

McNally’s office said he wasn’t available to comment. Sciortino said he didn’t know the details of the indictment but vowed to fight the charges.

“It’s very disheartening the government would go to this extent,” Sciortino said.

McNally and Sciortino were indicted four years ago on related criminal conspiracy charges, but the case was dismissed. Five other people also were charged in the initial indictment and were accused of conspiring to block a deal to move the county offices.

Prosecutors said at the time their inability to obtain tape recordings held by the FBI and provide them to defense lawyers made it impossible to proceed with the case.

Sciortino said he believed that the matter was over and was surprised by the indictment.

The charges against McNally are related to his time as a Mahoning County commissioner before he was elected Youngstown’s mayor last year, DeWine said.

The attorney general said it was not unusual for his office to look into a case that already had been investigated.

“We’re been carrying out our own independent investigation,” he said. “We went into this with no preconceived notions.”

The charges were announced in Cleveland because, DeWine said, some of the activities took place in Cuyahoga County and the Youngstown area. He said the investigation is continuing.

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