Robert Mellow, a former longtime leader of Democrats in the Pennsylvania Senate, pleaded guilty today in a public corruption case involving the use of state employees for political work.
The Scranton Times-Tribune reports that Mellow pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit mail fraud and to filing a false federal tax return for 2008.
From the story:
Speaking mostly in short bursts rather than the lofty oratory he employed in the Senate chambers, Mr. Mellow told U.S. District Judge Joel H. Slomsky he had voluntarily signed an agreement to plead guilty.
"How say you ... guilty or not guilty?" the judge asked.
"Guilty, your honor," Mr. Mellow said.
The Associated Press reports that Mellow faces up to five years in prison and a $250,000 fine when he is sentenced.
Mellow was the state Senate's longest-serving member when he retired in 2010. He had been the Democratic floor leader for much of the previous two decades and served as president pro tem for about 16 months in the early 1990s.