Assemblyman William Boyland, D-Brooklyn, is the latest state lawmaker to be convicted of corruption charges, as a federal jury found him guilty of 21 counts in a bribery and extortion scheme.
From the Associated Press:
A New York state assemblyman from a family of Brooklyn politicians was convicted Thursday of charges he was caught in a sting operation accepting bribes from a carnival promoter and two undercover FBI agents posing as out-of-town real estate investors.
A jury convicted William Boyland Jr. at a federal trial in Brooklyn.
The verdict came after prosecutors presented a case built on hours of audio and video recordings and the testimony of Boyland’s former chief of staff, who pleaded guilty to bribery charges and testified on behalf of the government.
The evidence revealed “the underbelly of the defendant’s corrupt, secretive and deceitful schemes,” Assistant U.S. Attorney Lan Nguyen said in closing arguments.
Boyland didn’t dispute that he drank and dined with the undercovers during meetings at the Waldorf Astoria in Manhattan, Peter Luger steakhouse in Brooklyn and the Tropicana Hotel in Atlantic City. But his lawyers said his only offense was making empty promises.
Boyland was immediately expelled from the state Assembly with the felony conviction. Within minutes, his name had been scrubbed from the Assembly website.
The conviction leaves the Assembly with 10 vacant seats, in addition to two vacancies in the state Senate. Gov. Andrew Cuomo has given no indication he plans to call a special election.