Preet Bharara, United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York, announced today that New York State Senator THOMAS W. LIBOUS was found guilty of making false statements to the Federal Bureau of Investigation (“FBI”) following a seven-day trial in White Plains before the Hon. Vincent L. Briccetti, United States District Judge.
Manhattan U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara said: “Public corruption is a scourge. Every New Yorker wants us to work as hard as possible to end it. But lies to law enforcement make the job of fighting corruption doubly difficult. Today, a jury unanimously found that Tom Libous, the second highest ranking New York Senator, told lie after lie to hide the truth from federal agents investigating corruption in Albany. Libous’s lies have been exposed, his crime has been proven, and Albany will be the better for it.”
The evidence at trial proved that a federal grand jury in White Plains was investigating allegations that THOMAS LIBOUS had obtained a job for a family member at a Westchester law firm (“the Law Firm”) in exchange for a promise to refer business to the firm, and had arranged for an Albany lobbying firm that regularly lobbied him to secretly pay the law firm $50,000 per year to defray the cost of the family member’s salary and lease of a Range Rover. The lobbying firm specialized in transportation issues and THOMAS LIBOUS served as the Chairman of the Senate’s Transportation Committee at the time. The evidence also showed that THOMAS LIBOUS told a partner of the Law Firm that the firm would have to “build a new wing” to accommodate the business he would refer to it if it hired the member of his family.
Special Agents of the FBI interviewed THOMAS LIBOUS on June 24, 2010, as part of the grand jury’s investigation. The evidence at trial showed THOMAS LIBOUS made the following false statements to the agents during the interview:
a.he could not recall how the family member began to work at the Law Firm;
b.no deals were made to get the family member the job at the Law Firm;
c.he was not aware that the lobbying firm had paid any part of the family member’s salary at the Law Firm;
d.he never promised to refer work to the Law Firm;
e.he was not involved in the family member’s decision to work at the Law Firm;
f.he had no business or personal relationship with the Law Firm; and
g.he did know of any relationship between the lobbying firm and the Law Firm.
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LIBOUS, 62, of Binghamton, New York, is scheduled to be sentenced by Judge Briccetti on October 30, 2015. LIBOUS faces a maximum sentence of five years in prison. The maximum potential sentence is prescribed by Congress and is provided here for informational purposes, as any sentencing of the defendant will be determined by the judge.
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Mr. Bharara praised the investigative work of the FBI.
The prosecution is being handled by the Office’s White Plains Division. Assistant U.S. Attorneys Benjamin R. Allee and James McMahon are in charge of the prosecution.
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