NEW YORK (NEWS10) — Former New York State lieutenant governor Brian Benjamin was in court Monday nearly a week after his arrest and indictment on federal corruption charges. He appeared before a a Manhattan federal court judge.
His defense attorney argued his cause is unlike any other political bribery investigation because it is based solely on political contribution issues and not personal benefits. Benjamin is accused of taking part in a scheme to obtain campaign contributions from a real estate developer.
In exchange, Benjamin is accused of agreeing to use his influence as a state senator to get a $50,000 grant of state funds for a non-profit organization controlled by that developer. He has pleaded not guilty to charges of bribery, honest services wire fraud, and falsification of records.
He resigned as lieutenant governor just hours after his arrest.