Retrial of Former New York State Senate Majority Leader Joseph L. Bruno Authorized by the Second Circuit Court of Appeals; Sufficient Evidence of Quid Pro Quo Presented at Trial
|U.S. Attorney’s Office November 16, 2011|
ALBANY, NY—In an opinion issued today in United States v. Joseph L. Bruno, the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit vacated the counts of conviction and authorized a retrial, as requested by the United States. In December of 2009, a jury convicted the former majority leader of the New York State Senate of two counts of honest services fraud. Then, in 2010, the United States Supreme Court decided United States v. Skilling, holding that the honest services statute criminalizes only fraudulent schemes involving bribes or kickbacks. Today, the Court of Appeals held that the evidence presented at trial was sufficient for a reasonable jury to find that Bruno accepted “payments that were intended to and did influence his conduct as a public official,” and that “Bruno’s actions deprived New York citizens of his honest services as a New York senator under the standard announced in Skilling.”
United States Attorney Richard S. Hartunian and Special Agent in Charge Clifford C. Holly of the Albany Division of the Federal Bureau of Investigation announced that, consistent with the Court’s decision, their offices will work expeditiously to present a superseding indictment.