Ex-Oyster Bay Town Supervisor John Venditto found not guilty in corruption case

Posted: Updated:
CENTRAL ISLIP -

Jurors found former Oyster Bay Town Supervisor John Venditto not guilty of all charges -- more than two dozen altogether -- Thursday in a federal corruption case.

The jury's foreman had earlier sent a note to the judge saying jurors had only made a unanimous decision on one defendant. The other defendants are former Nassau County Executive Ed Mangano and his wife, Linda.

"We are split on the other two," the note continued.

Venditto listened stoically as the jury foreman said not guilty. His wife wiped away tears, and his son, former state Sen. Michael Venditto, sat and pointed skyward as the jury delivered the verdict. The Vendittos have argued that the charges were politically motivated and designed to derail their political careers.

Throughout the trial, Venditto's defense attorney Marc Agnifilo had argued his client played no role in loan guarantees Oyster Bay Town had granted to Harendra Singh, the disgraced restaurateur who pleaded guilty to bribing officials and cooperated with prosecutors.

Evidently, jurors agreed with Venditto's argument.

"I knew it, and now the jury knows it, and the public knows it," Venditto said after the verdict. 

He credited Agnifilo, an elite defense attorney, for his work on the case and wondered aloud how many people may have been convicted because they had lesser lawyers working on their behalf.

"I see the power that the government has over a defendant," he said. "It made me wonder about how many people...are in jail today because maybe they couldn't get a lawyer the caliber I got to represent them."

Jurors are continuing deliberations on charges against the Manganos.

As News 12 Long Island has reported, the trial has stretched on for 11 weeks. Federal prosecutors accused the two former high-ranking Nassau officials of corruption and accepting bribes, among other charges. Linda Mangano is accused of lying to the FBI.

Jurors have spent the last five days deliberating and will return Friday.

Venditto is still facing unrelated state charges, but he said he's "ready for anything."

  • SlideshowsGalleriesMore>>

  • Dog Day Fridays for Oct. 18

    Dog Day Fridays for Oct. 18

    Friday, October 18 2019 10:16 AM EDT2019-10-18 14:16:58 GMT
    Douglas is a 5-year-old, male, neutered Cattle dog mix rescued through the Soi Dog Foundation in Thailand from the streets of Thailand. These dogs are often rounded up and sold to the dog meat trade in China. He is good with dogs and older children.Douglas is a 5-year-old, male, neutered Cattle dog mix rescued through the Soi Dog Foundation in Thailand from the streets of Thailand. These dogs are often rounded up and sold to the dog meat trade in China. He is good with dogs and older children.
    Douglas is a 5-year-old, male, neutered Cattle dog mix rescued through the Soi Dog Foundation in Thailand from the streets of Thailand. These dogs are often rounded up and sold to the dog meat trade in China. He is good with dogs and older children.Douglas is a 5-year-old, male, neutered Cattle dog mix rescued through the Soi Dog Foundation in Thailand from the streets of Thailand. These dogs are often rounded up and sold to the dog meat trade in China. He is good with dogs and older children.
    This week's dogs are up for adoption at Almost Home Animal Rescue & Adoption. The shelter is located at 646 Medford Ave. in Patchogue. Their phone number is (631) 627-3665.
    This week's dogs are up for adoption at Almost Home Animal Rescue & Adoption. The shelter is located at 646 Medford Ave. in Patchogue. Their phone number is (631) 627-3665.
  • Your Oct. 16 storm photos

    Your Oct. 16 storm photos

    Storm photos Oct. 17Storm photos Oct. 17
    Storm photos Oct. 17Storm photos Oct. 17
    Heavy right and high winds swept through the tri-state area due to a large coast storm on the night of Oct. 16. Here are your photos from the storm.
    Heavy right and high winds swept through the tri-state area due to a large coast storm on the night of Oct. 16. Here are your photos from the storm.
  • Yankees in the 2019 Playoffs

    Yankees in the 2019 Playoffs

    New York Yankees pitcher CC Sabathia throws against the Houston Astros during the 10th inning in Game 2 of baseball's American League Championship Series Sunday, Oct. 13, 2019, in Houston.New York Yankees pitcher CC Sabathia throws against the Houston Astros during the 10th inning in Game 2 of baseball's American League Championship Series Sunday, Oct. 13, 2019, in Houston.
    New York Yankees pitcher CC Sabathia throws against the Houston Astros during the 10th inning in Game 2 of baseball's American League Championship Series Sunday, Oct. 13, 2019, in Houston.New York Yankees pitcher CC Sabathia throws against the Houston Astros during the 10th inning in Game 2 of baseball's American League Championship Series Sunday, Oct. 13, 2019, in Houston.
    Photos on the field of the New York Yankees in the 2019 American League Division Series vs. the Minnesota Twins.
    Photos on the field of the New York Yankees in the 2019 American League Division Series vs. the Minnesota Twins.
sorry to interrupt
your first 20 are free
Access to News 12 is free for Optimum, Comcast®, Spectrum Networks® and Service ElectricSM customers.
Please enjoy 20 complimentary views of articles, photos, and videos during the next 30 days.
you have reached your 20 view limit
Access to News 12 is free for Optimum, Comcast®, Spectrum Networks® and Service ElectricSM customers.
Please login or create an account to continue enjoying News12.
Our sign-up page is undergoing maintenance and is not currently available. However, you will be given direct access to news12.com while we complete our upgrade.
When we are back up and running you will be prompted at that time to complete your sign in. Until then, enjoy the local news, weather, traffic and more that's "as local as local news gets."