Trial for former state senator Musto postponed till October
Last Modified: April 22. 2013 2:25PM
SCRANTON – The federal corruption trial of former state senator Raphael Musto that was scheduled to begin Monday has been postponed until Oct. 1.
U.S. District Judge A. Richard Caputo continued the trial to allow more time for a physician to complete his assessment of whether Musto, who suffers from liver disease, is too ill to stand trial.
Musto, 83, was indicted by a grand jury in November 2010 on charges of honest services fraud, corrupt receipt of a reward for official action and false statements. Prosecutors allege Musto accepted money and gifts from a local businessman -- identified by Musto’s attorneys as real estate developer Robert Mericle -- for using his influence as a senator to assist Mericle’s projects.
Federal prosecutors in April asked that a medical expert be appointed to examine Musto based on a report by a physician submitted by Musto’s attorneys that says he is so ill that the rigors of a trial could kill him.
Caputo appointed Dr. K. Rajender Reddy, a gastroenterologist at the University of Pennsylvania’s medical school, to review Musto’s medical records and examine Musto if necessary.
Musto’s attorneys on Wednesday advised the judge that Reddy has not yet completed his report, necessitating the continuance of the trial.