Former bar owner sentenced to prison for bribing Gordon Fox

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) — The former owner of a Providence restaurant was sentenced Wednesday to serve a year in prison for bribing Gordon Fox.

Raymond Hugh, 50, of Cranston, pleaded no contest in Superior Court to one count of bribery of a public official. Under the terms of the plea, Hugh was sentenced to three years in prison with one to serve and the rest suspended with probation.

Prosecutors were prepared to prove that Hugh paid Fox more than $52,000 in 2008 to secure a liquor license for Shark Sushi Bar & Grill, a restaurant Hugh co-owned on Thayer Street. He and his business partners had apparently run into some roadblocks in the process, with their neighbors complaining to the city’s Board of Licenses about the potential noise coming from a new bar.

Fox was serving as vice chairman of the Board of Licenses at the time. Hugh admitted in court to what Fox had already told federal investigators, saying he delivered an enveloped stuffed with two checks and cash to Fox at his law office.

In-Depth Coverage: Gordon Fox Investigation » (AP Photo)

When asked if he believed the facts in the case were true, Hugh answered: “They are very accurate.”

In March 2015, after resigning as House speaker, Fox pleaded guilty to charges of bribery, wire fraud, and filing a false tax return and was sentenced to three years behind bars. He’s scheduled to be released from federal prison in Feb. 2018.

After the hearing Wednesday, Hugh was put in handcuffs and taken to the ACI to begin his sentence.