CrimProf Blog

Editor: Kevin Cole
Univ. of San Diego School of Law

Thursday, November 24, 2022

"High court primed to temper political bribery convictions in case with ex-Cuomo aide"

From Courthouse News Service, via NACDL's news update:

Two bribery schemes are at the heart of those convictions. In 2012, when Percoco was serving as Andrew Cuomo’s executive deputy secretary, he got his wife a job with a state lobbyist Todd Howe. Howe headed up an energy company seeking a contract with the state. After hiring Percoco’s wife as an education consultant where she worked a few hours a week for $90,000 a year, Percoco helped Howe’s energy company obtain an energy contract for the state. 

There is no dispute that Percoco was employed by the state in that matter, but his other convictions fall under a much murkier timeline. In 2014, Percoco left Cuomo’s office for about eight months to manage the governor's reelection campaign. During this time, Percoco is alleged to have helped a real estate developer avoid signing a costly labor agreement in exchange for $35,000. 

The eight months where Percoco worked for Cuomo’s reelection campaign are key to the case before the high court. Percoco claims his role in this scheme sets him squarely in lobbyist — not criminal — territory.

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