Sen. Malcolm Smith was a arrested on Tuesday for bribing Republican officials in an attempt to get on the 2013 New York City mayoral ballot. Here’s what you need to know.
1. Malcolm Smith is a Democratic Member of the New York State Senate
Malcolm Smith is a democratic member of the New York State Senate for the 14th district, first elected to the Senate in 2000. In 2007, he was elected Minority Leader and subsequently elected Majority Leader and Temporary President of the body in 2009 and was the first African American to hold the position. Sen. Smith’s legislative achievements include securing funding for a health clinic in Queens, a toxic waste project cleanup in Jamaica and a bill to fight against child sexual abuse.
2. He Was Arrested Tuesday for Bribery
Sen. Malcolm Smith was arrested on Tuesday as part of a plot to rig New York City’s upcoming mayoral election, reports The Washington Post. The Democratic senator is charged with bribing Republican officials in an attempt to get on the GOP mayoral ballot as a Republican. During an investigation into the plot, an undercover FBI agent posed as a wealthy real estate developer and attended meetings with Smith. In exchange for cash from the developer, Smith agreed to help him get funding for a project in Spring Valley, New York. The senator used the money to bribe the Republican officials to get on the ballot. View the complaint below:
3. GOP Councilman Dan Halloran Was Also Arrested
Queens Republican city councilman Daniel Halloran was also arrested for conspiring with Sen. Smith. Halloran is accused of promising city council funds to the developer in exchange for money himself. His job was essentially to find party chairman who were open to receiving bribes.
4. Four Other New York Political Figures Were Arrested
Four other political figures were arrested for taking the bribes. The four include Bronx County Republican Party Chairman Joseph Savino, 45; Queens County Republican Party Vice Chairman Vincent Tabone, 46; Spring Valley Mayor Noramie Jasmin, 49; and Spring Valley Deputy Mayor Joseph Desmaret, 55.
“The complaint describes an unappetizing smorgasbord of graft and greed involving six officials who together built a corridor of corruption stretching from Queens and the Bronx to Rockland County and all the way up to Albany itself,” said U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara.
5. He Was Trying to Replace Mayor Bloomberg
Sen. Smith’s bribery plot was all so he could get a shot at replacing Michael Bloomberg as Mayor of New York City. Bloomberg has been in office for 12 years and on Janurary 1, 2014 a new mayor of New York City will fill the position.