New York Lt. Governor Arrested In Federal Corruption Investigation

NEW YORK (April 12, 2022) — U.S. prosecutors say New York Lt. Gov. Brian Benjamin has been arrested in a federal corruption investigation.

Lt. Gov. Brian A. Benjamin of New York, the state’s second-in-command to Gov. Kathy Hochul, surrendered early Tuesday morning to face a federal bribery conspiracy indictment in connection with a scheme to funnel fraudulent donations to a previous campaign, according to people with knowledge of the matter.

The indictment, the result of an investigation by the F.B.I. and the U.S. attorney for the Southern District of New York, accused Mr. Benjamin of conspiring to direct state funds to a Harlem real estate investor in exchange for orchestrating thousands of dollars in illegal campaign contributions to Mr. Benjamin’s unsuccessful 2021 campaign for New York City comptroller, the people said. The investor was arrested on federal charges in November.

The legal turmoil casts Mr. Benjamin’s political future in question, and complicates this year’s election for him and Ms. Hochul, who was catapulted into office last year after her predecessor, Andrew M. Cuomo, resigned after numerous allegations of sexual misconduct.

There is no suggestion that Ms. Hochul was aware of Mr. Benjamin’s alleged criminal conduct, which prosecutors said occurred when he was a state senator. Still, she took office last year promising to end an era of impropriety in Albany, and selecting Mr. Benjamin, 45, was among her first major decisions as governor.

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Source: AP News Reporter Zeke Miller, Washington, DC. and New York Times contributed to the article.

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