Former City Comptroller John Liu is suing the city and the Campaign Finance Board for withholding $3.8 million in public funds during his run for mayor last year.
The New York Post reported that Liu filed a Manhattan Federal Court suit on Wednesday. The lawsuit alleges that Liu's civil rights were violated when the Board blocked the funds last August due to the convictions of Liu's campaign treasurer and a fundraiser in connection with a straw-donor scheme.
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"The Board's arbitrary decision amounted to a 'death sentence' for Liu's mayoral candidacy," the suit states. "Liu was denied the opportunity to compete on an even playing field with the other mayoral candidates and his reputation was irreparably damaged."
Liu finished fourth in the Democratic primary last September.
The former comptroller is seeking unspecified money damages, the Post reported.
The Campaign Finance Board issued this statement: "Over 25 years and seven mayoral elections, the Board’s oversight has always been tough, but fair. It protects taxpayers, and ensures campaigns that receive funds are playing by the rules. We will not comment further on the litigation until the appropriate time."