Dean Skelos, son sentenced for corruption

Skelos
Former New York state Senate leader Dean Skelos, right, and his son Adam, 33, left, arrive for their arraignment in Manhattan federal court for the latest charges against them in a corruption case, Thursday, July 30, 2015, in New York. Both have have pleaded not guilty. (AP Photo/Bebeto Matthews)

NEW YORK (NEWS10) – Former New York Senate Majority Leader Dean Skelos and his son were sentenced on Thursday for corruption.

Both faced several corruption charges linked to Dean Skelos using his power in the Senate for Adam’s monetary gain.

Dean Skelos sentenced to five years in prison for corruption. He must also pay a $500,000 fine.

A large crowd followed Dean Skelos after sentencing. He didn’t answer any questions.

After leaving the courthouse, there was a scuffle as Dean Skelos got in his car.

NEWS10’s Ayla Ferrone says that one of Dean Skelos’ family members grabbed and threw a Daily News reporter’s cell phone.

Adam, Dean Skelos’ son, was sentenced to 6 1/2 years. He was also ordered to get alcohol counseling. A judge did not impose a fine for Adam because he said he can’t afford one.

Adam narrowly escaped questions as he got into a car.

Both stood before the judge and made statements as several family members watched and listened.

Dean Skelos said saying he is deeply remorseful and understands the seriousness of his charges. He apologized to his family, his son, and his constituents.

Adam Skelos was also emotional as he stood to speak, struggling through tears to get through his statement, and at times there are audible cries from family members. He also said he’s embarrassed by his actions as a bully and says he was selfish and reckless.

His tears continued as he apologized to his father saying, “you are sitting here because of me.”

The defense is asking for leniency saying the good Dean Skelos did in official capacity, various small acts of kindness balances out the charges he faces, and Adam needs to be there for his young children.

The judge said although Dean Skelos did some good as a Senator, there is a need to use his sentencing to deter others from being corrupt.

U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara issued this statement following the sentencing:

“In the span of just 16 months, we have seen the arrest, prosecution, conviction, and sentencing of both leaders of the New York State legislature.  The nearly simultaneous convictions of Sheldon Silver and Dean Skelos, whose corruption crimes were laid bare during fair and public trials, have no precedent.  And while Silver and Skelos deserve their prison sentences, the people of New York deserve better.  These cases show – and history teaches – that the most effective corruption investigations are those that are truly independent and not in danger of either interference or premature shutdown.  That will continue to be our guiding principle in exposing and punishing corruption throughout New York.  I thank the career investigators and prosecutors in my office, as well as FBI Assistant Director Diego Rodriguez and his entire team for their tremendous work in these two landmark prosecutions.  All New Yorkers who believe in clean government owe them an enormous debt of gratitude.”

New York Governor Andrew Cuomo issued this statement:

“These sentences show there is zero tolerance for those who use public service for private gain. Today, the guilty were punished and justice prevailed.”

Dean Skelos was convicted December 2015 for using his political stance to arrange payments and jobs for his son. It was the second big trial of a powerful New York politician.

Former New York Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver was sentenced to 12 years in prison last week.

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