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Former Senate Leader Skelos formally indicted on corruption charges

Karen Dewitt
WRVO News file photo

The former leader of the state Senate was formally indicted on federal corruption charges Thursday. Sen. Dean Skelos resigned as leader earlier in May after the accusations against him were announced by the U.S. attorney.

The indictment alleges that Skelos and his son Adam Skelos “engaged in a corrupt scheme to monetize” the elder Skelos’ positon as head of the Senate. It accuses them of obtaining hundreds of thousands of dollars in bribes and extortions from campaign donors to enrich the younger Skelos -- who was struggling to find a steady job.

The case involves alleged improper influence to win a contract in the senator’s home county on Long Island for a storm sewer treatment system. The treatment system project was making monthly payments to his son. Adam Skelos is also accused of using a burner phone in an attempt to cover his tracks.

New in the indictment are charges that Adam Skelos also received $100,000 from a medical malpractice insurer for a no-show job, when the insurer was lobbying the former Senate leader on legislation.

In addition to the charges, the federal prosecutors are seeking as restitution over $300,000 in two bank accounts in Adam Skelos’ name and his home in Rockville Center. 

Skelos has said he’s innocent and expects to be proven so in court.

Karen DeWitt is Capitol Bureau Chief for New York State Public Radio, a network of 10 public radio stations in New York State. She has covered state government and politics for the network since 1990.