Friday, October 29, 2010
Bloomberg met with aide on sham campaign funds: DA
A veteran campaign operative accused of stealing $1.1 million from Mayor Bloomberg during last year's mayoral campaign met personally with the mayor a few days before collecting the money, according to court papers filed today.
Manhattan DA Cy Vance Jr., who is prosecuting GOP operative John Haggerty Jr., reported that the meeting took place after Haggerty proposed a budget to the Bloomberg campaign for an Election Day ballot poll-watching operation.
"On October 28, the day after defendant Haggerty sent the e-mail (with his proposal) to top aides to the mayor, Haggerty met with them, as well as Mayor Bloomberg himself, to discuss the ballot security operation," Vance reported.
That marked the first time that anyone had revealed that Bloomberg himself was involved in the discussions about the ballot security effort.
Prosecutors charged that Haggerty's proposal was a sham.
They said he intended to keep almost all the funds for himself.
In dismissing arguments by Haggerty's lawyers to dismiss the charges against their client, Vance concluded: "Nothing can detract from what is essentially a simple case of theft."
Eric Seidel, the assistant DA handling the case, filed a brief stating that Haggerty admitted trying to deceive Bloomberg.
Seidel said Haggerty was interviewed on March 12 and June 22 in the presence of his lawyer and stated "he did not disclose to Mayor Bloomberg, his agents and his campaign employees that he was going to keep the money that was budgeted for the Election Day ballot security operation for himself because he believed if he did, he would not have received the money."
Seidel said further that Haggerty admitted "he lied and misled the Bloomberg campaign as to what he intended to do with the money budgeted for the Election Day operation."
Finally, Seidel said, Haggerty copped to concocting three fake $500 checks he gave poll workers -- who never actually received them.
The checks wound up being published in The Post after Haggerty provided them to the Bloomberg campaign as evidence he ran a legitimate operation.