Lawsuit seeks removal of Macomb Twp. trustee Dino Bucci
The attorney who represented ousted Macomb County clerk Karen Spranger is trying to get embattled Macomb Township trustee Dino Bucci removed from office.
Frank Cusumano Jr. represented Spranger during a litany of legal proceedings that ended with her removal by a judge, who ruled that Spranger was not a resident of Macomb County when she filed to run for clerk in 2016.
Now Cusumano is seeking the removal of another public official, arguing in his suit filed Thursday in Macomb County Circuit Court, that Bucci is ineligible to hold office for taking bribes and other offenses.
Bucci was indicted on charges of bribery, extortion, fraud, theft and money laundering last year. First elected a trustee in 2000, he is awaiting trial in U.S. District Court.
In his lengthy filing of "quo warranto," Cusumano listed some of allegations leveled against Bucci by federal prosecutors.
"The acts complained against Bucci which are the subject of this complaint arose before Bucci's assumption of the current term of office of trustee of Macomb Township and those acts (accepting bribes) rendered him ineligible to assume office and 'forever disqualified' him from holding public office," the complaint states.
Bucci allegedly received hundreds of thousands of dollars by extorting engineering contractors, forced county workers to drive his child to school as well, and made employees for the county plow snow at his home, according to federal court documents.
Bucci allegedly took a $66,000 bribe from a contractor in 2014, then gave the money to the FBI months after his indictment.
"I'm a taxpayer (and) I'm a resident of Macomb Township," Cusumano said Friday. "It's unacceptable and we should not turn a blind eye to it."
Efforts to reach Bucci were unsuccessful Friday. His attorney, Fred Gibson, declined comment on the efforts to remove his client from office.
Cusumano says he asked the Michigan attorney general to remove Bucci from office April 30. He also asked Gov. Rick Snyder to take action against Bucci.
"He's not doing anything for the township," Cusumano said Friday.
Cusumano said his actions in the Bucci case have nothing to do with the Spranger matter.
Spranger was removed as clerk in March after St. Clair County Judge Daniel Kelly she was ineligible to hold the office because she was not a resident of Macomb County when she ran for election in November 2016.
"No one ever accused Karen Spranger of being corrupt or taking bribes," said Cusumano.