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Former Rep. Marc Gergely sentenced to probation in video gambling ring case

Wes Venteicher
| Monday, Dec. 11, 2017, 1:36 p.m.
Marc Gergely
Submitted
Marc Gergely

Former Rep. Marc Gergely, a White Oak Democrat who pleaded guilty in August to charges related to an illegal gambling ring, was sentenced Monday to 18 months of house arrest and three years of probation, according to Allegheny County Court of Common Pleas documents.

Gergely, 48, used his position and influence to attempt to ease the fears of McKeesport-area business owners who were leery of putting illegal video gaming machines in their establishments, according to a 2016 grand jury indictment.

Pennsylvania Attorney General Josh Shapiro said in a statement that the conclusion of the case demonstrates public corruption is a priority for his office, noting that the case resulted in 18 convictions involving the seizure of nearly $1 million in illegally gained cash.

“I take public corruption very seriously,” Shapiro said in the statement. “No one is above the law, and public officials in Pennsylvania who corrupt their office will be prosecuted by my office to the full extent the law allows.”

The charges stemmed from a state investigation into Ronald “Porky” Melocchi, the gambling ring's mastermind, who was sentenced to probation after pleading guilty to charges in 2014. Pittsburgh attorney Louis Caputo also received a probation sentence for his role.

Gergely pleaded guilty to two misdemeanor charges in August. Felony charges were withdrawn, according to court documents.

Gergely was in his eighth term representing the 35th District in eastern Allegheny County when he resigned Nov. 6, his original sentencing date.

A special election to replace him will be held Jan. 23. The district includes McKeesport, Munhall, White Oak, Clairton, Duquesne, Versailles, Whitaker, Lincoln, South Versailles and part of West Mifflin.

Austin Davis, a local Democratic Party leader and assistant to Allegheny County Executive Rich Fitzgerald, is the party's nominee for the election. McKeesport Councilwoman Fawn Walker-Montgomery is the Republican nominee.

Wes Venteicher is a Tribune-Review staff writer. Reach him at 412-380-5676, wventeicher@tribweb.com or via Twitter @wesventeicher.

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