Former Bridgeport Mayor Joseph Ganim is out of federal prison after serving nearly seven years and said on Friday that the federal government withheld important evidence could have changed the outcome of his trial.
He sat down with NBC Connecticut for an exclusive interview and talked about the trial and the time he served for a corruption conviction. He also talked about his future and has not ruled out running for office again.
While Ganim admitted that he and his administration made some mistakes, but he also said the jury was not presented all the facts in his case.
Watch the full interview tonight on NBC Connecticut, beginning in the 5 p.m. news.
He would not say what that information was, but he accused the prosecution of ethical violations.
On March 19, 2003, he was found guilty of public corruption charges. In September of that year, he began serving a nine-year sentence in Fort Dix, New Jersey and later at the McKean Federal Correctional Institution in northwest Pennsylvania.
An early release date placed him in a halfway house in Hartford in January of this year and he returned home six months later.
Ganim said that while in prison, he tutored other inmates in things like filling out a job application, how to dress for a job interview and, in some cases, how to deal with people.
He said he found this work fulfilling, but he worried in his private time about his wife and children, his parents and extended family, and what family members would still be alive when he was released.
His sister died while he was incarcerated. It was, he said, a very difficult time.
Ganim said he felt a sense of anger and betrayal when two close associates, Leonard Grimaldi and Paul Pinto, gave damaging testimony against him.
Both pleaded guilty to helping Ganim run a scheme in which they also profited. They were given reduced sentences for their testimony.
But Ganim also said he's been able to put that behind him and he's now working to regain his license to practice law.
He's currently doing paralegal work with his family's law firm and said he's doing a great deal of volunteer work for several Bridgeport agencies, including the YMCA.
In terms of ever running for office again, he would not rule it out.
Right now, he says, it's not something he's looking at, although he also said the city of Bridgeport continues to have problems that are not being addressed.
If elective office does become an option down the road, Ganim said he'll take a good look at it.