Former Ohio official wants bail in Pakistan

Ahmad, 39, is a federal fugitive who fled to Pakistan while free on his own recognizance. At the time of his clandestine escape, he had been awaiting sentencing in a public bribery and corruption case in the Ohio treasurer’s office.

The court in the city of Lahore rejected Ahmad’s request to be released on bail and he will now apply to a higher court for bail, said Shahid Aslam, a correspondent with the News International in Lahore. Ahmad wants to remain in Pakistan, but U.S. officials are pressuring the Pakistan government to return him to America. Ahmad is a U.S. citizen who was born in Akron to Pakistani nationals.

Ahmad has been jailed in Lahore since his April 30 arrest there. He landed in Lahore with fake documents, $176,000 in cash and a journal in which he detailed his escape from Chicago through Mexico and eventually to Pakistan.

In December, Ahmad pleaded guilty to conspiracy and bribery charges for his involvement in a kickback scheme in the Ohio treasurer’s office. As part of a plea deal, Ahmad agreed to pay $3.2 million in restitution.

He served in the state treasurer’s office under Democrats Richard Cordray and Kevin Boyce. Investigators found he changed the state’s investment policy and steered trading work to a high school friend, who made $3.2 million in commissions and kicked back $523,000 to Ahmad and two co-conspirators.

After Boyce lost his seat to Republican Josh Mandel, Ahmad moved to Chicago to serve as city comptroller in the Rahm Emanuel administration. He abruptly resigned that post in July, a few weeks before he was indicted.

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