ALBANY, NY - A complaint from the campaign of State Senator Terrence Murphy launched the original corruption probe into New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio's campaign finance practices. The acting U.S. Attorney and Manhattan District Attorney today announced no charges would be brought in relation to the complaint which state investigators had originally called a "willful and flagrant abuse" of state campaign finance law. Senator Murphy had the following to say:
"Today's announcement by the US Attorney's Office, as well as the Manhattan DA's Office, are incredibly disappointing. The fact remains, as corroborated by Manhattan DA Cy Vance, that Mayor de Blasio and his inner circle funneled $671,329.79 to the Putnam County Democratic Committee in a blatant attempt to evade campaign finance limits imposed by New York State and used people with business in front of New York City to do so."
"The details of this case has been well documented including similar actions taken by the Mayor's Office to influence races in Monroe, Suffolk and Ulster Counties. Prosecuting authorities said earlier today that these actions were 'contrary to the intent and spirit of the laws that impost candidate contribution limits.'
"Now more than ever we must pass legislation to update our campaign finance laws starting with the closure of the Bill de Blasio Loophole. I have authored legislation that would classify these existing criminal acts as money laundering in an effort to prevent future violations of the campaign finance law."
Prosecutors were silent as to whether the investigations into the other pay-to-play allegations regarding the Mayor were ongoing. Senator Murphy's legislation to upgrade the "de Blasio loophole" from an E felony election law crime to a D felony money laundering crime, Senate Bill S2097, is currently on the Senate floor awaiting a vote.