Ex-Merrillville councilman pleads guilty to bribery

A former northwest Indiana town councilman has pleaded guilty to bribery for his role in an influence-buying scheme for towing contracts.

The (Northwest Indiana) Times reported Thomas Goralczyk, 51, entered the plea Wednesday in federal court. He admitted that he accepted two vehicles from a witness cooperating with the FBI on the promise he would use his influence as a Merrillville councilman to steer a towing contract to the informant’s towing company.

His sentencing is set for May 16. He faces a possible maximum sentence of 10 years in prison, a $250,000 fine and three years of supervised release.

Goralczyk was elected as a councilman in 2007 and served as president of the council in 2011 and 2015. He lost a re-election bid in 2015.

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