Less Than Ideal Statements
The U.S. Attorney’s office is holding a press conference any moment now to detail the charges against State Senator John Sampson, who was arrested this morning for his alleged involvement in a bribery scheme. Specifically, Mr. Sampson is charged with two counts of embezzlement, five counts of obstruction of justice and two counts of making false statements.
One particularly interesting moment in the indictment, which can be viewed below, is when FBI agents approached Mr. Sampson at the end of July to ask about the alleged criminal schemes. According to the complaint, “At the conclusion of the interview, agents advised the defendant John Sampson that he had lied to federal agents, which constituted a federal crime. After being asked whether he wished to revise his statement, Sampson stated, ‘Not everything I told you was false.’”
After State Senator John Sampson was arrested for his alleged involvement in a bribery scheme this morning, the lawmaker who replaced Mr. Sampson as the head of the Senate’s Democratic conference, Andrea Stewart-Cousins, acted swiftly by stripping him of rank and privilege.
“These allegations are deeply disturbing,” Ms. Stewart-Cousins said in a statement.
Another Shoe Drops
State Senator John Sampson, who up until recently led his chamber’s Democratic conference, is set to turn himself into federal authorities today after being ensared in a bribery scandal, according to The New York Times and New York Post.
It’s unclear to what extent Mr. Sampson may have been cooperating with federal prosecutors prior to this point. His involvement in an alleged scheme with then-State Senator Shirley Huntley, who already pleaded guilty to her own charges, was revealed last week when a sentencing letter made public Ms. Huntley’s own cooperation. The Times reports Mr. Sampson be charged with obstruction of justice.
Law & Order
Two of the most colorful characters in New York City politics, Democratic State Senator Malcolm Smith and GOP Councilman Dan Halloran, were arrested earlier this morning, according to multiple news outlets. They were among six people reportedly charged, including Bronx GOP chair Jay Savino and Queens GOP vice-chair Vince Tabone, in an alleged bribery plot to secure Mr. Smith a slot to run in the Republican mayoral primary.
Mr. Halloran is known for many things in city politics, including his outspoken embrace of libertarian philosophy, disputed reports of an intentional snowplow slowdown after 2010′s infamous blizzard, and his pagan religion. Meanwhile, Mr. Smith might be best known for his zoot suits complete with suspenders and pinstripes, picking strange political battles like a press conference denouncing the rapper Dwayne “Lil Wayne” Carter, and his somewhat surprising decision to seek City Hall’s top job on the other side of the partisan aisle without actually changing his voter registration. He would have needed the support of three GOP county leaders to do so, which federal prosecutors are alleging is at the heart of today’s case.
Assemblyman William Boyland, Jr. just can’t catch a break.
Days after his former chief-of-staff pleaded guilty and testified against him in his bribery trial, federal prosecutors announced new wire fraud charges against Mr. Boyland, accusing him of filing false per diem requests for Albany expenses when the assemblyman was actually meeting with undercover F.B.I. agents in one of the alleged bribery schemes.
The past 12 months have not been good for assemblyman William Boyland Jr. In March, he was arrested on federal corruption charges. In July, it was reported he was playing computer games when he should have been in session in Albany. In August, his GMC Yukon was shot at as he drove through his neighborhood of Brownsville—though this last event seems to have been random.
There was moment of hope when Mr. Boyland was acquitted in November. But no sooner had he settled back into life as a free man—nearly three weeks later—than FBI agents arrived at his home, and he was arrested on a second set of corruption charges. According to the indictment, the bureau had him on tape, soliciting bribes.
(He declined to be interviewed.)
Should he be convicted of the charges against him, Mr. Boyland will be the last of a nearly-40-year-long Brooklyn political dynasty.
Embattled Brooklyn Assemblyman William Boyland Jr. unveiled a new maxim on his personal Facebook page as he and his chief of staff face a new round of bribery charges. Over the weekend, Assemblyman Boyland Jr. replaced his profile picture on the site with a note reading: “I am too positive to be doubtful. Too Optimistic to be fearful. And too determined to be defeated.”
A federal jury acquitted Brooklyn Assemblyman William Boyland Jr. of bribery charges today. Assemblyman Boyland was accused of getting a six figure salary for a bogus hospital job after doing favors for an executive with Medisys, the health care network that runs the facility.