Joe Bruno trial continues as witnesses testify - NEWS10 ABC: Albany, New York News, Weather, Sports

Joe Bruno trial continues as witnesses testify

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ALBANY N.Y. - For the past two days in the Joe Bruno trial, prosecutors have been calling in witnesses to testify before the courtroom.

Jared Abbruzzese was called to the stand Thursday. He is a key witness to the case and has been granted immunity -- meaning his testimony cannot be used against him.

Abbruzzese is the Loudonville businessman who prosecutors say paid Bruno as a consultant for his companies -- paying the former senator $20,000 a month. On Thursday we learned that the state committed $1.5 million in funding in Abbruzzese's company called Evident-- a nanotech firm promising to bring jobs and growth to the Capital Region. We also learned that the senator helped secure some of that grant money.

Abbruzzese says he was given the first installment of $250,000, but his company did not see the remaining money. But, eventually Abbruzzese got the second installment of $250,000 after Bruno was hired by Abbruzzese to be a consultant for his companies.

The prosecution has to convince the jury that Bruno accepted the payments of $20,000 a month to help Abbruzzese's company get the state grant money. Bruno's attorney says those payments were solely for consultant fees only.

Prosecutors are continuing their questioning as Abbruzzese takes the stand. The defense has yet to cross examine the witness.

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