Kathleen G. Kane - Pennsylvania Office of Attorney General - Protecting Pennsylvanians

January 27, 2014

Notorious Northeastern Pa. criminal and two members of his legal team charged with intimidating witnesses

HARRISBURG - Attorney General Kathleen G. Kane today announced that the Attorney General's Criminal Prosecutions Section has filed charges against a notorious Northeastern Pa. criminal and two members of his legal team over allegations that they intimidated witnesses and lied under oath. 

click on thumbnail for larger image 

Hugo Selenski

 
Shelley Centini

 
James Sulima

Evidence and testimony regarding the alleged actions of Hugo Selenski, his attorney Shelley Centini and private investigator James Sulima, were presented to a statewide investigating grand jury, which recommended the criminal charges being filed today.

According to the grand jury, Selenski, Centini and Sulima conspired to undermine the prosecution of Selenski - who is facing trial on unrelated charges - through whatever means necessary, including; conspiring to impede justice; intimidating witnesses; soliciting perjury and obstructing the administration of justice.

The grand jury found that the three defendants met with at least five potential witnesses and provided them letters, allegedly handwritten by Selenski. Each letter was specifically addressed to the witness and allegedly contained references to their personal lives and how they should testify while in court.

Additionally, Selenski, Centini and Sulima allegedly lied regarding their involvement and conduct while testifying before the grand jury.

Selenski was arraigned via video this morning. Dauphin County Magisterial District Judge David Judy set bail was set at $1.5 million. Centini and Sulima are scheduled to be preliminarily arraigned before Judge Judy at 2:30 p.m..

Attorney General Kane thanked the Luzerne County District Attorney's Office and the Pennsylvania State Police for their assistance with the investigation.

The case will be prosecuted in Dauphin County by Deputy Attorney General Daniel J. Dye of the Attorney General's Criminal Prosecutions Section.

Below is a complete list of the defendants and the charges against them.

--Hugo Selenski, 40, currently incarcerated in a state correctional institution, is charged with five counts of intimidation of witnesses, five counts of solicitation to commit perjury, one count of conspiracy to intimidate witnesses, one count of theft by deception, one count of conspiracy to commit theft by deception, one count of perjury, one count of conspiracy to commit perjury, one count of obstructing administration of law, one count of conspiracy to obstruct administration of law, one count of tampering with or fabricating physical evidence and one count of conspiracy to tamper with or fabricate physical evidence.

--Shelley Centini, 38, 16 Old Mill Road, Wilkes-Barre, Luzerne County, is charged with five counts of intimidation of witnesses, five counts of solicitation to commit perjury, one count of conspiracy to intimidate witnesses, one count of theft by deception, one count of conspiracy to commit theft by deception, one count of perjury, one count of conspiracy to commit perjury, one count of obstructing administration of law, one count of conspiracy to obstruct administration of law, one count of tampering with or fabricating physical evidence and one count of conspiracy to tamper with or fabricate physical evidence.

--James Sulima, 49, 39 Ziegler Road, Pittston, Luzerne County, is charged with five counts of intimidation of witnesses, five counts of solicitation to commit perjury, one count of conspiracy to intimidate witnesses, one count of theft by deception, one count of conspiracy to commit theft by deception, one count of perjury, one count of conspiracy to commit perjury, one count of obstructing administration of law, one count of conspiracy to obstruct administration of law, one count of tampering with or fabricating physical evidence and one count of conspiracy to tamper with or fabricate physical evidence.

(A person charged with a crime is presumed innocent until proven guilty.)

# # #