Indictments Reveal Legislative Bribery Ring--And System
INDICTMENTS REVEAL LEGISLATIVE BRIBERY RING-- AND SYSTEM By Richard Cooper
The US Attorney for the Southern District of New York, Preet Bhaara, announced indictments on March 11th of two New York state
legislators and six others http://www.justice.gov/usao/nys/pressreleases/March11/krugercarletalcomplaintpr.pdf.
Two Brooklyn Democrats, Senator Carl Kruger and Assemblyman William F. Boyland, Jr. were indicted, along with lobbyist
Richard Lipsky; hospital executive Robert Aquino; real estate developer Aaran Malinsky; David P. Rosen, chief executive
MediSys Health Systems; health care consultant Solomon Kalish; and strangely enough, gynecologist Dr. Michael Turano.
The legislators were selling votes, according to the indictment.
Lobbyist Richard Lipsky sought and obtained Senator Kruger's support for New York state government funds forthree projects of his client Forest City Ratner, owned by developer Bruce Ratner.
As reported by the NY Times "Graft Charges Depict The Secret, Lavish Lifestyle Of A State Senator" (March 11, 2011) "$9 million would have gone to the
Carlton Avenue Bridge, $2 million for a retail development in Mill Basin and $4 million for the renovation of the skating
rink in Prospect Park." Neither Bruce Ratner nor his company, Forest City Ratner, were named in the indictment.
Lipsky was a supporter of the Brooklyn eminent domain and corporate welfare scheme known as Atlantic Yards. (Full
disclosure: I have been an opponent of this project, contributing financially to Develop, Don't Destroy Brooklyn. For
details, search groundreport.com for my other Atlantic Yards and eminent domain articles). However, he was an opponent
of the Queens eminent domain and corporate welfare scheme known as Willets Point. He is on Ratner's payroll. Purely,
a coincidence, I'm sure.
Senator Kruger has been indicted for illegally being induced by lobbyist Lipsky to seek the New York state taxpayer
funds on behalf of Lipsky's client Ratner. This is as it should be. But large sums of money are appropriated going
to the benefit of corporations in violation of the state constitution without bribery or extortion.
Fortunately, Buffalo attorney James Ostrowski and a squad of plaintiffs around the state have filed suit against the
governor, the legislative leaders, and some major firms such as IBM who have received these unconstitutional grants or
loans. I am pleased to be one of the plaintiffs. Known to its supporters as the Stop The Pork Lawsuit, the appeal is
going to be heard by the state's highest court, the Court of Appeals, most likely in April. The appellate brief filed by
my friend Jim Ostrowski can be read here http://politicalclassdismissed.com/wp-content/uploads/Binder2.pdf.
While those indicted now are Democrats, the record of Republicans from former State Senate Majority Leader Joseph
Bruno on down is no better.
While victory in the suit would not totally eliminate bribery, it should make bribery and extortion of state legislators
less profitable and therefore less likely. I have written about this case for GroundReport.com. I hope that we and
the embattled taxpayers of New York triumph in the Stop The Pork case, which will benefit New Yorkers long after
the defendants and the prosecutors are long dead and buried. -30-
About the author: Richard Cooper is an international trade executive with a manufacturing firm on Long Island, New York, USA. He is active in the Libertarian Party www.lp.org on eminent domain and other issues. He was chair of the Libertarian Party of New York http://ny.lp.org.
Tags: Carl Kruger , Preet Bhaara , Corruption , Forest City Ratner , Eminent Domain , Corporate Welfare , Atlantic Yards , Willets Point , Stop The Pork
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