Skelos, son found guilty on extortion charges

Skelos and his son face a maximum of 130 years behind bars.

Skelos and his son face a maximum of 130 years behind bars. (12/11/15)

NEW YORK - Former New York Senate leader Dean Skelos and his son, Adam, were convicted today on extortion charges.

The verdict put to rest a three-week federal political corruption trial against one of the state's most powerful politicians.

As News 12 has reported, federal prosecutors alleged Skelos used his position in Albany to "strong arm" businesses into giving his son high paying, no-show jobs. Skelos and his son Adam denied the charges. 

During the trial, prosecutors released wiretap recordings of conversations between Skelos and his son. Prosecutors said the tapes were proof the pair schemed behind the scenes. The defense argued that Skelos was merely a loving father eager to take care of his only child, not a politician on the take.

The senator and his son showed no emotion as the verdict was read, but Dean Skelos' wife sobbed in the gallery. Outside court, Skelos and his son said nothing as they walked to their car. Dean Skelos rarely let go of his son's shoulder. Attorney Robert Gage briefly spoke for the two.

"We are obviously very disappointed with the verdict. The next step is post-trial motions, and we intend to pursue them vigorously," said Gage.

Skelos and his son face a maximum of 130 years behind bars. 

Sentencing is March 3. The two men remain free without bail.

AP wires contributed to this report.



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