Former Prince George's County Council member Anthony J. Cicoria, convicted of theft charges in October, was being sought by sheriff's deputies yesterday after he failed to keep an appointment with a probation officer. However, sources said, Cicoria's attorneys have told prosecutors that he intends to appear in court today for sentencing.
Cicoria, who was free on bond after being convicted of stealing $64,324 in campaign funds, failed to show up Monday for a court-ordered meeting with a probation officer in Beltsville, officials said.
The judge in his case, who had allowed Cicoria to remain free until his sentencing, immediately revoked Cicoria's $25,000 bond and issued a warrant for his arrest.
Deputies searching for Cicoria discovered yesterday that all of his belongings had been moved out of his house in the 4000 block of College Heights Drive in University Park, sources said. Three neighbors told deputies that they last saw Cicoria on Dec. 1, when a yellow moving van backed up to the house and carried away its contents.
Cicoria is required to inform his probation officer of any change of address. When he last spoke to the officer on Friday, officials said, he mentioned nothing about moving out of his home.
Cicoria's attorneys told prosecutors Monday that they had been in touch with their client, sources said, and that Cicoria planned to appear for his sentencing this morning in Prince George's Circuit Court.
The attorneys also told prosecutors that Cicoria had "indicated" that his wife, Catherine, would accompany him to the Upper Marlboro courthouse today, sources said. Catherine Cicoria, a co-defendant with her husband, has been a fugitive since early October, when she failed to show up for what was intended to be a joint trial.
Anthony Cicoria's attorneys, Robert Mance and Antonio Jones, could not be reached for comment yesterday. One of the prosecutors, Scott Nevin, said, "We have been assured that Mr. Cicoria is going to show up."
In allowing Cicoria to remain free after his conviction, Circuit Court Judge Robert C. Nalley ordered him in strong terms not to leave Maryland, except to visit his attorneys in the District.
Since then, sources said yesterday, the FBI has interviewed a Florida resident who reported seeing Cicoria in the Palm Beach County community of Jupiter, in a neighborhood where Cicoria owns a house.
Sources also said that deputies searching for Catherine Cicoria suspect that she has hidden in Mexico for at least part of the last 10 weeks, and that her husband left Maryland at least once last month to visit her there. Anthony Cicoria has denied knowing his wife's whereabouts.
Cicoria, a two-term Democrat from the Hyattsville area, was a candidate for reelection before being convicted on Oct. 30 of theft, conspiracy and filing false Maryland income tax returns. His wife, who was his campaign chairman, faces the same charges, in addition to seven counts of perjury for allegedly signing fraudulent campaign finance reports during the 1980s.
After his conviction, Anthony Cicoria threw his politicial support to a fellow Democrat, Takoma Park Mayor Stephen J. Del Giudice, who won Cicoria's council seat in the Nov. 6 election as a write-in candidate.
The latest twist in Cicoria's case began Friday, officials said, when he called the state's Division of Parole and Probation in Beltsville and asked to postpone his weekly, court-ordered meeting, saying he was sick. The meeting was rescheduled for 10 a.m. Monday, but he failed to appear.
William Earle, the division's regional administrator, said Cicoria had kept all of his weekly appointments before Friday.
Although three neighbors in University Park told deputies they had seen a moving van at Cicoria's house on Dec. 1, none could recall the name of the moving company, sources said. But one of the movers used a neighbor's telephone to call his company's office. If Cicoria fails to appear in court today, sources said, investigators would examine the neighbor's telephone records to determine the company's name, hoping it would aid their search.