CBS2-Header-Logo WFAN 1010WINS WCBS tiny WLNYLogo

News

Mistrial Motion Weighed In Malcolm Smith Corruption Trial

Sen. Malcolm A. Smith on March 12, 2008  in Albany, New York. (Credit: Getty Images)

Sen. Malcolm A. Smith on March 12, 2008 in Albany, New York. (Credit: Getty Images)

TRI-STATE NEWS HEADLINES

From our newsroom to your inbox weekday mornings at 9AM.
Sign Up

WHITE PLAINS, N.Y. (CBSNewYork/AP) — The federal judge at the corruption trial of three New York politicians says he’ll talk to jurors before deciding whether to declare a mistrial.

Judge Kenneth Karas on Monday denied a motion to dismiss charges against state Sen. Malcolm Smith, former New York City Councilman Daniel Halloran and former Queens Republican leader Vincent Tabone.

They’re accused of participating in a scheme to bribe Republican Party leaders so Smith, a Democrat, could run for the GOP line in last year’s New York City mayoral race.

Mistrial Motion Weighed In Malcolm Smith Corruption Trial

scales Mistrial Motion Weighed In Malcolm Smith Corruption Trial
Irene Cornell reports

Karas is hoping to avoid a mistrial by granting a delay, allowing defense attorneys to review more than 70 hours of newly disclosed recordings, many of them in Yiddish.

The government added 27 Yiddish translators to work around the clock on the tapes, WCBS 880′s Irene Cornell reported. Defense attorney Gerald Shargel, however, said he doesn’t trust the tapes were accurately translated.

Tabone’s attorney, Vinoo Varghese, told 1010 WINS’ Juliet Papa: “We’re working with the other lawyers to try to get this done. I don’t speak Yiddish, but I’m learning quite a bit of it over the last week or so.”

Mistrial Motion Weighed In Malcolm Smith Corruption Trial

gavel1 Mistrial Motion Weighed In Malcolm Smith Corruption Trial
Juliet Papa reports

Karas said that if enough jurors agree to serve through the delay — another two weeks — the White Plains trial can go on. The judge plans to talk to jurors Tuesday morning.

Shargel told Papa that such a delay could be “dicey” for the trial.

Smith allegedly paid off Halloran and top Republican Party bosses, believing running on the GOP line would help his chances at winning City Hall. He needed three of the five county leaders to sign off.

Prosecutors said more than $100,000 changed hands.

Smith is described by federal prosecutors as a prime example of the kind of corruption that pervades Albany. He’s running for re-election despite his legal troubles.

Halloran and Tabone, who was vice chairman of the Queens Republican Party, are co-defendants in the trial. Halloran allegedly “quarterbacked” the scheme for Smith.

Shargel says the senator is a victim of entrapment.

You May Also Be Interested In These Stories

(TM and © Copyright 2014 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2014 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)