REDWOOD CITY -- A prosecutor on Wednesday urged a judge to send a former Clayton councilman convicted of embezzlement to jail, saying he has shown no remorse nor taken any responsibility for his crime.

The judge, too, said former Vice Mayor Joe Medrano has described himself as the "innocent victim" and has yet to admit that what he did was wrong.

"The problem is he still feels justified in taking that money," San Mateo County Superior Court Judge Jonathan Karesh said.

Medrano, a 48-year-old former insurance broker, was in court Wednesday for a sentencing hearing for his conviction in October for taking $159,000 from his client iPass and not forwarding it to Travelers Insurance. During the trial, Medrano maintained the money was owed to him as commission for his services.

Karesh heard arguments from both sides but delayed¿ sentencing until Dec. 31 at 9 a.m. because Medrano's attorney was late, and the judge wanted additional time to read reports related to the case. The felony carries a maximum of four years in state prison. Medrano did not speak in court Wednesday.

Deputy District Attorney Sharron Lee requested that Medrano be sent to jail for two years and serve two more years of mandatory supervised probation in addition to paying $203,340 to iPass and Travelers Insurance to cover money owed to each company, plus attorney fees. An attorney for Travelers said Medrano has not been willing to repay them, or to apologize.

"Travelers has been forced to play the role of chump in this scheme -- the one holding the bag," attorney David DeMordaunt said.


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Defense attorney Kenneth Moyal, who asked that Medrano be put on probation, said the guilty verdict has punished his client enough. As a result of the verdict, Medrano lost his broker license, his business and his council seat. He resigned from the council in October and was not re-elected in November, effectively ending his political career.

Moyal also requested leniency based on the fact that Medrano has no prior criminal record and has partial custody of his 14-year-old daughter.

David DeBolt covers Concord and Clayton. Contact him at 925-943-8048. Follow him at Twitter.com/daviddebolt.