Last updated: August 22. 2014 12:45AM - 6096 Views
By BILL O’BOYLE boboyle@civitasmedia.com

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WILKES-BARRE — Mayor Tom Leighton said it was business as usual Thursday afternoon following news that five people had been arrested as part of investigation of the Wilkes-Barre City Employees Federal Credit Union.

“I’m sure this is upsetting to a lot of people, but again, this has nothing to do with city business,” Leighton said.

“They rent space at City Hall,” Leighton said.

Among those arrested by FBI and state police Thursday were former city towing contractor Leo A. Glodzik, current city police officer Jason Anthony, retired officer Tino Ninotti and credit union assistant manager Amanda Magda. A fifth person, Jeffrey Serafin, also was charged.

“As far as Glodzik, he is no longer working for the city and is not being paid anything by the city,” Leighton said.

Glodzik was suspended from his $50,050 yearly towing contract with the city on May 31, 2013, the day he was arrested in a separate theft case. Glodzik is appealing a conviction handed down by a Luzerne County jury earlier this year and Leighton said his towing contract remains suspended pending the outcome of that matter.

Leighton was in his office preparing for a meeting when approached by a Times Leader reporter on Thursday afternoon. He said no investigators have spoken to him with respect to the five arrests.

The mayor reiterated previous statements that the credit union is not a city department.

Leighton said he continues to run the city, and he acknowledged that the arrests are upsetting.

A walk through all four floors of City Hall revealed all departments working and employees busy at their desks. Conversations and occasional laughter could be heard.

Formal statement

Leighton also released a formal statement on the arrests, saying that he was informed by city Police Chief Gerard Dessoye about the two lawmen’s arrests.

“Officer Jason Anthony and retired officer Tino Ninotti were taken into custody by federal agents this morning for their involvement in the credit union investigation,” Leighton said in the statement. “Chief Dessoye is aware of the ongoing investigation and has been cooperating with the Federal Bureau of Investigation.”

The statement said Dessoye has been unable to comment previously on the nature of the investigation due to the involvement of active and retired police personnel. He indicated that a disciplinary hearing will be scheduled for Anthony as soon as possible.

“The Wilkes-Barre Police Department and my administration have always and will continue to cooperate with any federal, state, or local law enforcement agency on any investigation involving city employees,” Leighton said. “Today’s arrests are not a reflection of the Wilkes-Barre Police Department as a whole. The actions of a few individuals should not cast a negative light on the hardworking, law abiding officers employed in the city’s police department.”

Leighton’s statement then directed all other questions concerning the arrests to the FBI.

Credit union

According to its website, the city employees credit union has been open since 1960 and has 2,213 members and $41.7 million in assets.

It further states, “Wilkes-Barre City is a multiple common bond, primarily federal, state, local government credit union. Eligible members can open savings/checking accounts and apply for loans.”

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