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SAN JOSE � Thursday’s indictment of San Jose Mayor Ron Gonzales signals round two for San Jose attorney Allen Ruby and Santa Clara prosecutor Julius Finkelstein. The two lawyers went head to head in the Avant Corp. criminal trade secrets case in 2001. Now they will face off again in the coming months as Ruby prepares to defend Gonzales against charges he engineered an $11.25 million backroom deal with the city’s trash haulers six years ago. County sheriffs arrested Gonzales and his top budget aide, Joe Guerra, on Thursday morning after the civil grand jury issued an indictment in the case. The indictment was se aled Thursday, but the two men are facing charges of conspiracy, bribery, embezzlement and destruction of documents, according to Santa Clara County Counsel Ann Ravel. Gonzales and Guerra posted $50,000 bail each and were released. In a report last year, the Santa Clara civil grand jury stated Gonzales had duped taxpayers out of millions when he and his aides reached a secret deal with Norcal Waste Systems in 2000 to raise residents’ service rates by 9 percent to cover a pay hike for Teamsters at a local recycling plant. An independent investigator hired by the city auditor’s office agreed with jurors in December, and the DA’s office reopened the case shortly thereafter. While the charges are far-reaching, prosecutors will no doubt have an uphill battle, too, given Ruby’s reputation as a defense lawyer. Ruby is known as a “fearless” defense attorney who’s a “powerhouse” in the courtroom, according to lawyers around the Bay Area. But then so is Finkelstein. He won a plea deal in 2001 against Avant Corp. that forced the software maker and seven individuals to cough up $35 million in fines. Five defendants in the case were thrown behind bars for stealing computer code from a competitor. Ruby’s client, however, was the only defendant who avoided jail. The big question now: Can Ruby do the same for Gonzales, who is termed out of office at the end of this year? “Allen Ruby is the Michael Jordan of the legal profession,” said Kenneth Robinson, a San Jose criminal defense attorney who defended former Mountain View Mayor Mario Ambra on bribery charges in 2002. Ruby “always gives 100 percent, rises to the occasion and finds a way to win,” Robinson said. “He doesn’t need my advice on how to handle this case.” The DA’s office refused to comment Thursday but is planning a press conference today to discuss the case. A court hearing is set for Monday. Ruby did not return a call for comment Thursday, but a statement issued from the mayor’s press office said Gonzales “broke no laws.” The indictment got a cool reception from one well-known local attorney. James McManis, a partner with McManis, Faulkner & Morgan, says the DA’s charges are “rubbish.” McManis, a former prosecutor, represents the president of Norcal waste Systems. “Why does this DA bring cases that have no business in the criminal court [system]?” McManis said Thursday. “I don’t know if the DA considers this sport � he’s obviously anxious to bring down a civic leader.” Yet as word of the indictment spread, Vice Mayor Cindy Chavez and three city council members called on Gonzales to step down immediately. Chavez said she asked the City Council to schedule a special meeting seeking his resignation. “He made a secret deal. He lied about it. He covered it up. He should have stepped down,” said Councilman David Cortese. The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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