Former Indiana school official sentenced in bribery

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The former East Chicago public schools treasurer has been sentenced to five months in prison after pleading guilty to accepting a bribe.

The Times of Munster and the Post-Tribune of Merrillville report 51-year-old Francisco Ramirez said during a federal court hearing Friday in Hammond that he knew that taking the $5,000 bribe was wrong but he was influenced by an air of entitlement in East Chicago.

Ramirez was previously convicted for awarding a school contract in exchange for free home repairs. The construction company's owner, Geraldo Lozano of Hobart, was sentenced last month to 21 months in prison after pleading guilty to bribery.

Ramirez resigned as school district treasurer on March 8, the day before he was charged.

Ramirez must also repay $4,108 to the School City of East Chicago.

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