Hammond Councilman Admits Federal Bribery Charge

HAMMOND, Ind. (AP) _ A federal judge has accepted a Hammond city councilman’s guilty plea to a charge of bribery.
  The Times of Munster and the Merrillville Post-Tribune reported Councilman Al Salinas changed his plea to guilty Monday during a hearing in U.S. District Court. He also pleaded guilty to one count of not filing a federal tax return.
  The 52-year-old Salinas faces up to 10 years in prison on the bribery count and up to one year on the tax count. Sentencing is scheduled for Aug. 13. 
  Court records indicate Salinas steered at least $310,000 in city tree-trimming contracts to David Johnson of Munster and received $10,500 in exchange. Johnson pleaded guilty in October to a federal charge of paying more than $10,000 in bribes to Salinas.