Senator, Four Others Indicted in Mayoral Race Bribes

Sen. Malcolm Smith (D-Queens). (AP Photo/Tim Roske)
Sen. Malcolm Smith (D-Queens). (AP Photo/Tim Roske)

WHITE PLAINS, N.Y. (AP) - A Democratic state lawmaker was formally indicted Thursday for plotting to bribe his way onto this year’s New York City mayoral ballot as a Republican.

State Sen. Malcolm Smith and five other politicians are named in the indictment, which echoes a criminal complaint issued April 2.

The indictment, from a grand jury in White Plains, alleges Smith schemed with New York City Councilman Daniel Halloran to bribe Republican party leaders. It says two party leaders, Joseph Savino and Vincent Tabone, accepted tens of thousands of dollars in exchange for agreeing to help.

Smith never formally began a mayoral campaign. Authorities said he would have needed permission from three of the city’s five Republican county chairmen to run on the GOP ticket.

Smith’s attorney, Gerald Shargel, said, “We’re going to enter a plea of not guilty. The charges are ill-founded, and we look forward to a time when Sen. Smith can put this behind him.”

Arraignment is scheduled for Tuesday.