Federal Grand Jury Indicts Sen. Skelos & Son

     MANHATTAN (CN) – Ex-New York State Senate Majority Leader Dean Skelos used his former position to gain “hundreds of thousands of dollars in bribes, gratuities, and extortion payments” for his son, a six-count indictment charged Thursday.
     The former top Republican stepped down from his post after federal prosecutors charged him and his son Adam Skelos in a complaint replete with code words, burner phones and wiretapped phone calls.
     Thursday’s indictment largely tracks the allegations from earlier this month.
     The latest chapter in Albany’s public-corruption scandal, Skelos stands accused of using his political heft to get his son on the payrolls of an Arizona-based environmental firm that wanted to score contracts related to hydraulic fracturing regulations.
     Fracking contractors allegedly made regular payments to Adam Skelos that increased from $4,000 to $10,000 per month over time.
     He also collected a $20,000 payment for a no-show job from an unnamed developer, according to the indictment.
     Spanning 2010 to April 2015, the scheme benefited the younger Skelos to the tune of hundreds of thousands of dollars, prosecutors claim.
     Though he failed to register as a lobbyist, Adam Skelos went to bat for the fracking contractor before his father and other state and county officials, according to the indictment. Father and son allegedly tried to avoid surveillance by communicating on devices even they described as “burner” phones.
     Skelos and son face six charges of conspiracy to commit extortion, conspiracy to commit honest services fraud, two counts of extortion, and two counts of solicitation of bribes and gratuities.
     The Skeloses reportedly each face a maximum penalty of more than 80 years in prison.
     Forfeiture could cost the pair roughly $192,000 and $107,581 from two JPMorgan accounts and their Rockville Centre property.
     The case landed on the docket of U.S. District Judge Kimba Wood.
     Attorneys for the Skelos family did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

%d bloggers like this: