A federal jury last week found four former Traffic Court judges guilty of lying, but acquitted them and three others of the more serious charges of conspiracy and wire and mail fraud.
Jurors found former judges Mike Lowry, Robert Mulgrew and Thomasine Tynes guilty of committing perjury in front of a federal grand jury. They found another ex-judge, Willie Singletary, guilty of lying to the FBI when questioned about ticket fixing at Traffic Court.
Three defendants — former judges Michael Sullivan and Mark A. Bruno and businessman Robert Moy — were found not guilty.
“We respect the jury’s verdict in this case and will continue our efforts to root out corruption in Philadelphia and this district,” said United States Attorney Zane David Memeger. “We are pleased that the jury convicted these former judges of the serious offenses of lying under oath and lying to the FBI.”
Sentencing hearings are expected in October. Each defendant faces a maximum possible sentence of up to five years in prison.
The case was investigated by the FBI. It was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorneys Denise Wolf and Anthony Wzorek.
Co-defendants H. Warren Hogeland, Kenneth Miller, Fortunato Perri, William Hird and Henry P. “Eddie” Alfano previously pleaded guilty. Hogeland died last year. The other four await sentencing.
Hird was director of records at Traffic Court. Alfano is a businessman. Perri, a former state representative, was Traffic Court’s administrative judge.
Miller, a Delaware County senior district judge, heard some cases in Traffic Court. So did Hogeland, a Bucks County senior magisterial district judge.
The U.S. Attorney’s Office announced a grand jury indictment of 12 people affiliated with Traffic Court in January 2013.
The charges stemmed from family and friends of judges and employees being acquitted for moving violations at a much higher rate than the general public.
Last year, the state legislature voted to transfer Traffic Court operations to Municipal Court. Gov. Tom Corbett signed the bill.
Municipal Court has established a traffic division at Traffic Court’s former home at 8th and Spring Garden streets.
Also, the legislature passed a bill that would eliminate Traffic Court from the state Constitution.
To become law, that bill must pass the House and Senate in two consecutive legislative sessions and pass a statewide referendum. The earliest that could happen would be the spring of 2015. ••