Sheldon Silver

Silver Found Guilty of Corruption

Former New York Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver (D) “was found guilty on Monday of federal corruption charges, ending a trial that was the capstone of the government’s efforts to expose the seamy culture of influence-peddling in Albany,” the New York Times reports.

New York Post: “​The conviction of Silver — for decades one of the three most powerful politicians in the state — was a huge victory for anti-corruption crusading Manhattan US Attorney Preet Bharara.”

Silver Will Step Aside Temporarily

Sheldon Silver (D), “the longtime speaker of the New York State Assembly, agreed on Sunday to relinquish his duties on a temporary basis as he fights federal corruption charges,” the New York Times reports.

“His decision came amid mounting pressure from his fellow Democrats in the Assembly, who worried that the criminal charges would impair his ability to carry out the duties of one of the most powerful positions in the state’s government. In an unusual arrangement, Mr. Silver would not quit his post. Instead, he would temporarily delegate his duties as speaker to a group of senior Assembly members.”

Three Men in a Room

One day after the arrest of Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver (D), U.S. attorney Preet Bharara criticized Albany’s political culture, Capital New York reports.

Said Bharara: “There are by my count 213 men and women in the state legislature, and yet it is common knowledge that only three men essentially wield all the power. I must confess a little bit of confusion about this: When did this come to pass? Why has everyone just come to accept it?”

Top Prosecutor Puts New York Politicians on Notice

U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara said that New York Speaker Sheldon Silver’s (D) arrest is likely the first of many, Business Insider reports.

Said Bharara: “These charges in our view go to the very core of what ails Albany: lack of transparency, lack of accountability, and lack of principle — joined with overabundance of greed, cronyism, and self-dealing. But we will keep at it. As our unfinished fight against public corruption continues, you should stay tuned.”

He added: “You can expect more cases to come, because there is a lot more corruption that has not yet been brought to light.”

New York Speaker in FBI Custody

“The powerful speaker of the New York State Assembly, Sheldon Silver, was arrested on federal corruption charges on Thursday, sending shock waves through the political establishment and upending the new legislative session,” the New York Times reports.

Silver, a Democrat from the Lower East Side of Manhattan who has served as speaker for more than two decades, surrendered to F.B.I. agents and told reporters, “I hope I’ll be vindicated.”