Delle Donna even performed the ceremony when Inclan got married a few years ago.
He pushed county leaders to promote Inclan to eventually become the Hudson County Clerk, a position that Inclan held until last year, when he became a deputy chief of staff under Gov. Jon Corzine.
That all becomes a part of the past Monday morning, when Inclan is slated to be one of the witnesses that the prosecuting attorneys from the U.S. Attorney's office will call to the stand to testify against Delle Donna in his and wife Anna's federal trial.
The trial of Mayor Delle Donna and his wife on federal corruption, fraud, and tax evasion charges will officially get under way with opening statements and witness testimony in Judge Harold Ackerman's courtroom in Newark Monday morning at 10 a.m.
The 12-member jury and four alternates were selected by both the attorneys representing the Delle Donnas and the federal attorneys on Wednesday, setting the stage.
Both Anna Delle Donna's attorney Brian Neary and David Delle Donna's representative Ralph Lamparello said the first witness to take the stand will likely be Luisa Medrano, the former Union City and Guttenberg bar owner who befriended Anna Delle Donna and allegedly provided the mayor's wife with lavish gifts.
Medrano, who pleaded guilty to her involvement in a human trafficking ring involving underage girls from Honduras, has agreed to testify against the Delle Donnas in return for leniency when she receives her federal sentencing.
Another witness is expected to be Robert "Yogi" Rogers, Sr., the town's code enforcement officer and license inspector. It was first believed that Rogers' son, Robert, Jr., was cooperating with the federal investigators, because the younger Rogers ran afoul of the law regarding three contracting deals in Bergen County two years ago.
But the witness list reveals that it's the elder Rogers who will be called to testify, because "Yogi" Rogers allegedly was in charge of collecting political contributions for Delle Donna.
A source said that it is believed that Medrano will reveal that she gave money to Rogers for tickets for a campaign event and Rogers then gave the money to Inclan, who was in charge of the finances for Delle Donna's 2000 and 2002 elections.
According to a reliable source, Inclan has already given sworn testimony to the federal investigators about allegedly not reporting cash contributions during that period.
Under Delle Donna's leadership, Inclan went from being the Guttenberg councilman to the executive director of the powerful Hudson County Democratic Organization (HCDO).
In 2003, Inclan was appointed as Hudson County clerk. He remained in that capacity until January of 2007, when he took the job with the governor's office.
The indictment against the Delle Donnas allege that Anna Delle Donna allegedly accepted a multitude of gifts from Medrano, including cash for plastic surgery and to gamble on trips to Atlantic City, as well a bottle of alcohol, jewelry, department store gift certificates, and even a dog.
The indictment states that in return for the gifts, Delle Donna allegedly gave special treatment to Medrano in securing a liquor license for a second bar she planned to open in the town.
Medrano is facing anywhere between two to five years for her involvement in the human trafficking charges, which has already resulted in as many as 10 convictions or guilty pleas. Her sentence is expected to be lessened in return for her cooperation.
It's not known whether the federal investigators have any information against Inclan that would have forced him to testify against Delle Donna.
Mayor will fight charges
There were reports that a plea bargain deal was in place, but both attorneys representing the Delle Donnas refuted those charges.
"We're all set to go to trial," said Lamparello, representing David Delle Donna. "The whole case is based around Medrano. David Delle Donna is a blue-collar guy, a hard working man who is clearly not guilty of these charges."
"We never had plans to make a plea deal," said Anna Delle Donna's attorney Neary. "Both Anna and David are determined to prove their innocence."
Other charges in the indictment include claims that Delle Donna allegedly took contributions from a real estate developer and a Guttenberg fire official, totaling $600 in cash, and never reported the donations, as well as allegedly filing fraudulent campaign reports and tax return reports having to do with Delle Donna's real estate holdings in the town.
The trial is expected to last about three weeks, with as many as 50 potential witnesses. v Jim Hague can be reached via e-mail at either OGSMAR@aol.com or firstname.lastname@example.org