Court overturns former NY assembly speaker Sheldon Silver's corruption conviction

York State Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver arrives at the Manhattan U.S. District Courthouse in New York U.S. on No

"Although finding that the Supreme Court's McDonnell decision issued after Silver's conviction required a different legal instruction to the jury, the Second Circuit also held that the evidence presented at the trial was sufficient to prove all the crimes charged against Silver, even under the new legal standard", he said. He was sentenced to 12 years in prison in May 2016. Prosecutors decided not to try that case last September.

A three-judge panel rejected Silver's challenges to the sufficiency of the evidence.

In the Supreme Court decision, the justices redefined an "official act" by an office holder that can be the "quo" in an illegal quid pro quo - and ruled that criminal acts must be concrete, rather than actions arranging a meeting or making a phone call.

The Supreme Court recently reversed the conviction of Virginia Republican ex-Gov. "Although it will be delayed, we do not expect justice to be denied". "The question presented to us, however, is not how a jury would likely view the evidence presented by the government".




A federal jury convicted Silver two years ago of accepting $5 million in bribes, by virtue of his ceremonial job at a law firm specializing in recovering damages for asbestos-related illnesses and his dealings with a real estate developer reliant on state funds for its business.

The case was prosecuted by former U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara, who was the scourge of corrupt state politicians before President Trump fired him for reasons that remain suspicious. The judge in Silver's case had defined it as "any action taken or to be taken under color of official authority", which "was erroneous under McDonnell", the appeals court said.

Joon Kim, the acting U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of NY, said he looks forward to retrying the case.

The key government witness who helped bring down Sheldon Silver is hoping the disgraced pol's overturned conviction will help him get his own job back. A jury that had been given accurate instructions may not have found Silver guilty, the court found, according to the Times. Robert Menendez (D-N.J.), whose trial is scheduled to begin in September. And Silver, analysts said, might have similar trouble. "It remains to be seen whether he wins the war".

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