Associate of former Fall River mayor avoids prison time
BOSTON (AP) — An associate of a Massachusetts mayor convicted last month of corruption charges has avoided prison and was sentenced Monday to probation.
Antonio Costa, whose testimony helped convict former Fall River Mayor Jasiel Correia, was sentenced in U.S. District Court in Boston to three years of probation, the first 15 months of which must be spent in home confinement. He was also fined $10,000, ordered to forfeit more than $100,000 and to perform 100 hours of community service.
Correia was convicted of stealing money from investors in his startup to bankroll his lavish lifestyle and soliciting bribes from marijuana vendors who wanted to operate in the city.
Costa acted as a middleman in the marijuana scheme. At Correia’s trial, Costa testified he took a $100,000 check from a marijuana vendor in exchange for a letter of nonopposition and a community host agreement from Correia. He was paid $30,000.
Costa pleaded guilty in 2019 to charges including extortion. He was offered a deal with no prison time by prosecutors in exchange for his testimony against Correia.
“We simply couldn’t have made this case without Mr. Costa,” Assistant U.S. Attorney Zachary Hafer said.
Costa apologized in court.