Towing titan Gasper Fiore pleads guilty in Macomb County corruption scandal

Posted at 10:19 AM, Dec 20, 2017
and last updated 2017-12-20 23:10:11-05

Gasper Fiore, 57, pleaded guilty Wednesday to conspiring to commit bribery in connection with a municipal towing contract in Clinton Township, announced Acting U.S. Attorney Daniel Lemisch.

The owner of multiple towing companies in southeast Michigan, Fiore admitted at the plea hearing that he conspired to pay bribes to Clinton Township Trustee Dean Reynolds in order to obtain a municipal towing contract with the township.

The plea deal is already costing Fiore business in the city of Detroit. Sources in the mayor's office confirm to 7 Action News that contracts with all of Fiore's companies have been suspended.

Other contractors are bidding for the business, which could run into the millions of dollars as Fiore provided police towing and snow plowing for Detroit.

Fiore admitted to giving Reynolds cash bribes of $4,000 and $3,000 in March and May of 2016 in order to buy Reynolds' vote to select Fiore's company to receive the Clinton Township towing contract.

Fiore paid the bribes to Reynolds through Charles B. Rizzo, who was cooperating with federal law enforcement at the time of the bribe payments. 

Rizzo, former chief executive officer of Rizzo Environmental Services, pleaded guilty to bribery and embezzlement charges on Nov. 9. 

The bribery conspiracy charge to which Fiore pled guilty carries a maximum sentence of 5 years imprisonment.

"Today's guilty plea is a significant blow to corruption in southeast Michigan,' Lemisch said. "Bribery subverts representative government, and this conviction demonstrates that such conduct, by either public officials or bribe payers, will not be tolerated."