Spate of public corruption cases a reminder of importance of strong defense
A recent article discussing the recent cluster of high profile public corruption cases is a good reminder of several things. First of all, as the article points, out, it is a reminder that elected officials are certainly not beyond ethical failures. That is something about which most of us do not need to be reminded.
The charges are also a reminder of the fact that public corruption investigations and charges are very much a product of prosecutorial discretion. Prosecutors can be expected, for instance, to make an example out of individuals in high profile positions.
At present, two former house leaders—Dean Skelos and Sheldon Silver—have been sentenced on public corruption charges. In addition, prosecutors have subpoenaed Governor Andrew Cuomo’s office for records connected to economic development issues, as well as advertisers to Mayor Bill de Blasio in connection with allegations of illegal campaign contributions. Such allegations, of course, can easily come up when a public official takes an unpopular approach to public issues. Prosecutors must take allegations seriously, but it is the role of defense counsel to investigate the evidence in support of charges and highlight weak points in any criminal case.
For public officials facing any sort of investigation, particularly a criminal investigation, it is important to work with experienced legal counsel to get a firm handle on the potential charges involved and what can be done to minimize the consequences of the investigation or any charges that may arise. Our firm is committed to providing knowledgeable and zealous representation in such cases.