Former pot club owner out of jail 12 days after arrest

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Updated: 9/13/2012 2:41 pm
SOUTH LAKE TAHOE, Calif. (KRNV & MyNews4.com) -- The former pot club owner who prosecutors say bribed a South Lake Tahoe City Councilmember is now getting out of jail - 12 days after his arrest.

A judge gave Gino DiMatteo clearance today to post $100,000 after proof was presented the money will not come from illegal activities.

Prosecutors were also supposed to publicly present basic evidence for the first time today on the charges against DiMatteo, but the defense team asked that portion of the hearing be pushed back so they have more time to prepare an argument.

A defense attorney would not let Irene DiMatteo go on camera, but she told News 4 the prosecutors seem to believe the alleged bribe is a donation the couple made to the Lake Tahoe Education Foundation. That's because City Councilmenber Angela Swanson was in the room when they turned over the money.

She also said the money raised came from a pool table and hot dog stand at their old City of Angels 2 Pot Club. The couple would collect money there and regularly give it to different charities around town.

Today, News 4 was also the first to obtain copies of search warrants in this case.

The one for Councilwoman Angela Swanson's bank account and home has been sealed by a judge, meaning the public can't know what they found or why investigators wanted the warrant.

The search warrant for DiMatteo's properties say police found a hidden marijuana grow room, but it does not reference anything related to the bribery charge.

News 4 has also confirmed that right now there are several other search warrants on this case still out, and prosecutors are staying tight lipped about who they are looking at, only going on record to say this investigation is still developing.

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