A federal jury convicted former Democratic state Sen. Malcolm Smith Thursday afternoon on fraud and bribery charges in connection with an elaborate plot to run as a Republican in New York’s 2013 mayoral election.
Smith was arrested after attempting to bribe Republican party bosses for their party’s mayoral nomination in 2013.
The jury deliberated for less than four hours in the White Plains courthouse and found Smith guilty on all four charges, including bribery, conspiracy, wire fraud, and use of interstate facilities to commit bribery and extortion.
Smith pleaded not guilty to all the charges and was originally granted a mistrial in 2014 after prosecutors failed to hand Smith’s attorneys hours of undercover recordings in Yiddish. The retrial was pushed back again when Smith convinced the court to delay it as he ran for reelection to the Senate.
He lost the seat in November to former Councilman Leroy Comrie.
The same sting that caught Smith led to the arrests of former Queens City Councilman Dan Halloran and Queens GOP Vice Chairman Vincent Tabone. Both Halloran and Tabone were also convicted.
U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara, who revealed the scheme in 2013, admonished all three men for the giving and taking of bribes.
"This was just one of many pockets of corruption this office has uncovered in New York, which has become the 'show me the money' state," Bharara said in a statement. "It should not be asking too much to expect public officials at least to obey the law."
Smith, who now awaits sentencing, faces up to 45 years in prison.