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The Politics of Corruption: Edward Ambrosino

Hempstead Town Councilman Edward Ambrosino

Edward Ambrosino

Charges: Income tax evasion, wire fraud

Background: After more than a decade on the Hempstead Town Board, Councilman Edward Ambrosino was accused of failing to pay more than $250,000 in income taxes, much of which came from jobs performed for Nassau County. Feds said Ambrosino, a lawyer, siphoned off money for two years to a shell company and underreported his earnings. In the week following Ambrosino’s arrest, the Nassau County IDA dropped him as one of their attorneys. He pleaded not guilty to the charges.Read more

“Public officials are not exempt from paying their fair share of taxes and otherwise complying with the laws of the United States, just like any other citizen.”Acting U.S. attorney for the Eastern District Bridget Rohde

“I believe the case revolves around Mr. Ambrosino’s tax returns that he has already amended. If he was ‘Ed Public’ rather than ‘Ed Politician,’ we wouldn’t be in this situation.”Defense attorney Dennis Lemke

Other LI officials charged with abuse of power


The Politics of Corruption: Gerard Terry

Ex-North Hempstead Town Democratic Leader Gerard Terry

Gerard Terry

Charges: Tax evasion

Background: Gerard Terry, leader of the North Hempstead Democratic Party, concocted a complex scheme to avoid paying federal taxes totaling over $1.4 million since 2000, officials said. He did so while earning more than $250,000 a year. Terry pleaded not guilty to two federal tax-evasion-related charges. In September 2017, Terry pleaded guilty to a state charge of tax fraud. He admitted he failed to file a 2010 state personal income tax return and did not pay more than $3,000 in taxes. He is scheduled to be sentenced on that charge in November 2017. Read more

“Terry has manipulated and enlisted others in his obstructionist practices.”Letter in his indictment

The tax situation was the result of a “cascading series of serious health issues,” Terry has said, citing his open heart surgery, and he promised to settle with the IRS.

The latest on the Terry case

Sept. 25, 2017: Gerard Terry, ex-town Dem leader, pleads guilty to tax fraud
Sept. 25, 2017: Brown: Nassau towns suddenly embrace ethics reform
Aug. 15, 2017: Gerard Terry makes court appearance on tax evasion charges
May 28, 2017: 9 North Hempstead employees miss disclosure deadline
April 17: 2017: Feds and defense say talks ongoing to resolve Gerard Terry tax case
April 1: 2017: Several investigations of Long Island public officials underway
March 1: 2017: North Hempstead officials OK revisions to town’s ethics policy
Feb. 6: 2017: Did Terry get help to hide his taxes?
Feb. 2, 2017: Agency releases ex-party chair after tax evasion arrest
Jan. 31, 2017: Gerard Terry charged by Feds with tax evasion, officials say
Sept. 27, 2016: Gerard Terry, ex-Dem leader, indicted on tax fraud charges
June 7, 2016: Concetta Terry leaves job as deputy North Hempstead town clerk
May 13, 2016: North Hempstead Ethics Board cites the town’s deputy clerk
April 27, 2016: Gerard Terry’s tax fraud case put off
April 27, 2016: North Hempstead mulls banning workers from supervising relatives
April 13, 2016: Gerard Terry arraignment leads to Nassau Sheriff’s investigation
April 13, 2016: Brown: Gerard Terry tax case reaches beyond his own issues
April 12, 2016: Gerard Terry, ex-North Hempstead Dem leader, arrested, DA says
March 28, 2016: North Hempstead Town plugs ethics holes
March 23, 2016: North Hempstead passes broad ethics reforms, promises more
Feb. 28, 2016: North Hempstead seeks new zoning attorney to replace Gerard Terry
Sept. 27, 2016: Gerard Terry, ex-Dem leader, indicted on tax fraud charges
Feb. 27, 2016: Gerard Terry case leads N. Hempstead to enforce 25-year-old law
Feb. 18, 2016: Concetta Terry, deputy town clerk, under review by ethics board
Feb. 15, 2016: Letter: A tale of two town scandals
Feb. 9, 2016: North Hempstead Democrats back replacement for Gerard Terry
Feb. 8, 2016: Brown: Gerard Terry case shows intersection politics and patronage
Feb. 4, 2016: Gerard Terry’s contract with Roosevelt Library terminated
Feb. 2, 2016: Gerard Terry, embattled town Dem chairman, quits Board of Elections post
Feb. 1, 2016: Gerard Terry to resign as North Hempstead Democratic leader
Jan. 31, 2016: Dem chair has 6 government jobs, $1.4M tax debt

Other LI officials charged with abuse of power


The Politics of Corruption: Dean Skelos

Ex-State Sen. Dean Skelos

Dean Skelos

Charges: Tax evasion

Background: Former State Sen. Dean Skelos was convicted of using his Senate power to help his son Adam get jobs and payments from businesses. The 20-year senator and second Long Islander to lead the N.Y. Senate majority pressured three companies to give jobs, fees and benefits worth $300,000 to Adam, doing favors in Albany for the companies in return, prosecutors said. He also intervened with Nassau County to help one of the companies on a contract. In September 2017, an appeals court overturned the conviction. The acting U.S. attorney, Joon Kim, said his office will pursue a retrial.Read more

“To the extent you wish to do community service…you can teach others in prison.”Manhattan U.S. District Judge Kimba Wood

“It’s destroyed my reputation…Somehow I let things go off the rails.”Dean Skelos

The latest on the Skelos case

Sept. 26, 2017: Appeals court overturns Dean Skelos conviction
Aug. 7, 2017: Dean Skelos lawyers cite Silver reversal in appeal
July 7, 2017: Anthony Bonomo, Skelos trial witness, ousted from company
May 8, 2017: Ex-Republican leader Dean Skelos deserves new trial, lawyer says
May 18, 2017: Charles Lavine: Don’t use campaign funds for criminal defense
March 25, 2017: Brown: Nassau Republicans need to act on contract reforms
March 25, 2017: Brown: Nassau Republicans need to act on contract reforms
March 23, 2017: Contractors bypass Nassau disclosure law
Dec. 28, 2016: Skelos, Silver postscript: LI firms face lobbying fines
Oct. 27, 2016: Judge questions insurer’s refusal to pay in Adam Skelos case
Aug. 4, 2016: Skelos, son to stay out of prison pending appeal
July 28, 2016: Dean Skelos formally disbarred after corruption conviction
July 15, 2016: Skelos, Silver have hefty campaign cash to pay legal bills
June 16, 2016: State corruption deal would take away convicted pols’ pensions
June 7, 2016: Editorial: Albany should cast a wide net in pension-stripping bill
May 12, 2016: Skelos sentenced to 5 years in corruption; son gets 6 1/2
April 27, 2016: Dean Skelos: $500,000 fine in corruption case ‘unwarranted’
April 15, 2016: Dean Skelos judge questions legality of increasing fine; rejects bid for new trial
April 4, 2016: Dean Skelos, son Adam should face stiff sentences
April 4: 2016: Letter: Dean Skelos’ plea was pathetic
March 27, 2016: Pols among writers of 184 letters on Dean Skelos’ behalf
March 23, 2016: Adam Skelos asks for ‘mercy’ in sentencing memo
March 14, 2016: Dean Skelos’ sentencing postponed until April by judge
Feb. 25, 2016: Letter: Pensions for convicts is beyond troubling
Feb. 17, 2016: Dean Skelos, convicted of corruption, gets $95G state pension
Feb. 4, 2016: Dean Skelos, son get postponement in sentencing on corruption conviction
Jan. 26, 2016: Dean Skelos, son Adam, seek new trial, or acquittal of federal corruption charges
Jan. 15, 2016: Dean Skelos spent $762G on legal defense, records show
Dec. 30, 2015: Dean Skelos’ seat sparks political battling
Dec. 29, 2015: Ex. Sen-Dean Skelos files for pension 11 days after conviction, officials say
Dec. 21, 2015: Dean Skelos park in Rockville Centre subject of name-change effort
May 31, 2015: Most Nassau contracts like the one in Skelos probe don’t go to lowest bidder, records show

Other LI officials charged with abuse of power


The Politics of Corruption: Frederick Ippolito

Ex-Oyster Bay Town Commissioner Frederick Ippolito

Frederick Ippolito

Convicted of: Tax evasion (federal)

Charged with: Money laundering (state), defrauding the government (state), bribe receiving (state), official misconduct (state), theft of services (state) and receiving reward for official misconduct (state)

Background: Ex-Oyster Bay official Frederick Ippolito pleaded guilty in January 2016 in connection with $2 million in outside consulting fees he received while working as the town’s planning and development commissioner. While the judge acknowledged Ippolito informed the town Board of Ethics of his arrangement, he said board members should have known better. Ippolito died in prison on June 5, 2017, while appealing his sentence. Less than a month later, Ippolito was charged with receiving $1.6 million in bribes, some of which are the same funds at the center of his federal case, to help construct a senior housing development, Nassau DA Madeline Singas said. A judge ended that criminal case in September 2017.
Read more

“When he is getting over $2 million from someone he’s supposed to be regulating…that’s certainly a conflict.” U.S. District Judge Leonard Wexler

“While certainly we are gratified that the court did not largely enhance the sentence, we are concerned with the manner in which the court arrived at the sentence.”Attorney Brian Griffin after the sentencing

The latest on the Ippolito case

Sept. 27, 2017: Judge dismisses corruption charges against the late Fred Ippolito
Sept. 2, 2017: Oyster Bay ex-commissioner still influenced town, affidavit says
July 12, 2017: Oyster Bay announces changes after corruption indictments
July 6, 2017: Nassau to stop awarding contracts to indicted Old Bethpage firm
July 1, 2017: Brown: Nassau district attorney steps into corruption fight
June 29, 2017: Editorial: Public’s trust betrayed in Oyster Bay
June 29, 2017: Ex-Oyster Bay supervisor Venditto, others charged with corruption
June 29, 2017: Oyster Bay corruption indictments add to federal tax case
June 27, 2017: Sources: Several indicted in Oyster Bay corruption probe
June 5, 2017: Frederick Ippolito, ex-Oyster Bay official, dies, attorney says
April 30, 2017: GOP bill would ban public corruption felons from county office
March 6, 2017: Brown: The horse often escapes the ethics barn on LI
Feb 22, 2017: Nassau DA wiretapped 3 former Oyster Bay officials, sources say
Feb. 10, 2017: Nassau grand jury probing Oyster Bay corruption, sources say
Jan. 4, 2017: Town of Oyster Bay faces a rough road to honest government
Nov. 18, 2016: Ippolito reports to federal prison, official says
Nov. 15, 2016: Ippolito ordered to prison after panel’s bail bid denial
Nov. 8, 2016: Appeals panel suspends start of prison term for Ippolito
Oct. 27, 2016: Ippolito prison sentence delayed by appeals judge
Sept. 29, 2016: Ippolito reports to federal prison, official says
Sept. 29, 2016: Frederick Ippolito, ex-Oyster Bay commish, sentenced to 27 months
Sept. 29, 2016: Brown: Federal judge reveals what Oyster Bay officials haven’t
Aug. 14, 2016: Oyster Bay’s Ippolito got $2M from developer, documents show
July 11, 2016: Judge orders Oyster Bay to release documents to Newsday
April 19, 2016: Oyster Bay has no plans to replace Frederick Ippolito
January 28, 2016: Frederick Ippolito vacated post, Nassau DA Madeline Singas says
Jan. 27, 2016: Brown: Why is Ippolito still on Oyster Bay payroll?
Jan. 26, 2016: Oyster Bay’s Frederick Ippolito pleads guilty to tax evasion
Aug. 9, 2015: Prominent restaurateur and government contractor arranged, paid for trips for Nassau Exec Edward Mangano, other officials, investigation finds
Oct. 30, 2015: Newsday reporter seeking Oyster Bay public records escorted out by cop
Aug. 25, 2015: Editorial: Oyster Bay leaders strain public trust
July 14, 2015: Frederick Ippolito named in $146,130 warrant for back taxes
May 18, 2015: Frederick Ippolito, Oyster Bay official facing tax evasion charges, returns to work
April 29, 2015: Oyster Bay ethics board to investigate complaint against Frederick Ippolito
April 18, 2015: Firm, big political donor, got $100M in work
April 10, 2015: Frederick Ippolito takes indefinite leave from town post
March 24, 2015: Oyster Bay residents call for town action on indicted commissioner
March 23, 2015: Brown: Frederick Ippolito tax-evasion case raises conflict of interest questions
March 20, 2015: Oyster Bay Commissioner Frederick Ippolito indicted on income tax evasion charges
March 9, 2014: Oyster Bay denies allegations made in suit over restaurant

Other LI officials charged with abuse of power


The Politics of Corruption: Edward Walsh

Ex-Suffolk County Conservative Party Leader Edward Walsh

Edward Walsh

Convicted of: Wire fraud and theft of government funds

Background: While at the helm of the Suffolk County Conservative Party, Edward Walsh golfed, gambled and politicked on the county’s dime, Feds said. Walsh was convicted in March 2016 for illegally collecting more than $200,000 in pay and overtime pay he didn’t earn. His conviction sparked a battle over leadership within the party he once led. Walsh was sentenced to two years in prison and was ordered to make $202,000 in restitution on June 20, 2017.Read more

“[Walsh] thought he was special…He thought he could rig the game so the rules didn’t apply to him.” Prosecutor Raymond Tierney

“We’re disappointed in the judge’s decision, but we respect it.” Attorney William Wexler after judge denied conviction overturn

The latest on the Walsh case

Aug. 21, 2017: Edward Walsh prison surrender delayed by federal judge
June 21, 2017: Brown: Politics intrude on Walsh sentencing
June 21, 2017: Brown: Politics intrude on Walsh sentencing
June 20, 2017: Edward Walsh sentenced to 2 years in prison, ordered to make restitution
June 1, 2017: Federal judge rules Ed Walsh doesn’t face increased sentence
May 22, 2017: Edward Walsh hearing postponed from Monday, now set for June 1
April 28, 2017: Judge delays Conservative Party leader Edward Walsh’s sentencing
April 24, 2017: Defense seeks to delay Walsh sentencing after new accusations
Feb. 2, 2017: Ed Walsh wire fraud sentencing postponed until April
Nov. 9, 2016: Judge denies request to overturn Edward Walsh fraud conviction
Oct. 23, 2016: 2 Suffolk judges recuse themselves in Conservative Party fight
Oct. 10, 2016: Faction sues over Suffolk Conservative party chairman election
July 31, 2016: Walsh, ex-Suffolk Conservative chairman, to return $16.5G
May 16, 2016: Edward Walsh fails to qualify for immediate pension
April 2, 2016: Edward Walsh case jurors say no to government corruption
April 2, 2016: Edward Walsh’s conviction raises questions about benefits
March 31, 2016: Edward Walsh convicted on all counts in federal court
March 31, 2016: Edward Walsh conviction sparks Conservative leadership fight
March 30, 2016: Judge denies defense motion to find Ed Walsh not guilty
March 30, 2016: Edward Walsh’s abuse victim criticizes party boss
Jan. 8, 2015: Conservative Party head Edward Walsh golfed, gambled on government time, say prosecutors
Jan. 7, 2015: Walsh seen as ‘bully’ as he ascended to party leadership spot
Jan. 6, 2015: Conservative Party chief Edward Walsh to be charged with salary fraud, sources say
Oct. 8, 2014: Editorial: Look deep into corrosive mix of politics and judges
Sept. 24, 2014: Grand jury looking at Suffolk Sheriff Lt. Edward Walsh widens scope
Dec. 10, 2014: Edward Walsh’s expense spending faulted in federal complaint filed by Brookhaven Conservatives
Aug. 23, 2014: Clues emerge in direction of Walsh investigation
Aug. 21, 2014: Editorial: Nothing routine about Walsh investigation
Aug. 11, 2014: Edward Walsh probe turned over to FBI, Suffolk Sheriff DeMarco says
July 25, 2014: Edward Walsh returns to Suffolk payroll as he fights firing
July 15, 2014: Edward Walsh told that Suffolk sheriff’s department seeking his termination
June 25, 2014: Edward Walsh, Suffolk Conservative leader, suspended from sheriff’s department job
May 8, 2014: Editorial: Fire officer-party leader from both jobs
May 3, 2014: Edward Walsh probe shows minor party can cause major complications
April 30, 2014: Conservative Party’s Edward Walsh among sheriff employees in corrections wage probe

Other LI officials charged with abuse of power


The Politics of Corruption: John Venditto

Ex-Oyster Bay Town Supervisor John Venditto

John Venditto

Federal charges: Conspiracy to commit bribery, fraud, obstruction of justice, making false statements to federal agents

State charges: Corrupt use of position or authority, official misconduct, conspiracy, defrauding the government

Background: Oyster Bay Town Supervisor John Venditto was arrested alongside Mangano in October 2016. Venditto pleaded not guilty, and resigned in January. In June 2017, Venditto and seven other Oyster Bay officials were accused by Nassau DA Madeline Singas of “bribery, money laundering and a crooked multimillion-dollar property deal.” He also pleaded not guilty to these charges. His trial date on the federal charges is slated for 2018.Read more

“Mr. Mangano and Mr. Venditto received bribes and kickbacks from their co-conspirator on an on-demand basis or as opportunities arose in connection with business dealings.” U.S. Attorney Robert L. Capers

“When you know in your heart that you didn’t do the things you were accused of, it makes it a little easier to handle.” John Venditto

The latest on the Venditto case

Sept. 5, 2017: Venditto court papers seek dismissal of corruption charges
Sept. 2, 2017: Oyster Bay ex-commissioner still influenced town, affidavit says
Aug. 25, 2017: Mangano files motion seeking to dismiss federal corruption charges
Aug. 3, 2017: Oyster Bay Dems: 11.5% tax levy increase pays for ‘corruption’
July 26, 2017: Nassau DA fires investigator for alleged corruption probe interference, sources say
July 22, 2017: Brown: Nassau has reform fever in election year
July 15, 2017: Brown: Oyster Bay proposes reform after reform
June 29, 2017: Oyster Bay corruption indictments add to federal tax case
June 29, 2017: Ex-Oyster Bay supervisor, others surrender at DA’s office
June 28, 2017: Sources: Oyster Bay officials to be arraigned
June 28, 2017: Filler: How Saladino can shed party’s legacy
June 27, 2017: Sources: Several indicted in Oyster Bay corruption probe
June 19, 2017: Town agrees to work with probe in order to borrow $50M
June 19, 2017: Town agrees to work with probe in order to borrow $50M
June 1, 2017: Judge rules in Harendra Singh $6 million loan guarantee suit
May 27, 2017: Brown: Saladino promises transparency but doesn’t answer question
May 8, 2017: Stampede of elected officials running toward reform
April 6, 2017: Oyster Bay Town OKs $1M in concession rental contracts
April 1, 2017: Brown: Investigations of LI public officials underway
March 12, 2017: Oyster Bay supervisor wants to review town board liaison system
March 11, 2017: Marc Herman likely Dem choice to run for Oyster Bay supervisor, chairman says
March 7, 2017: Dems likely to pick attorney Laura Gillen as Hempstead supervisor candidate
March 6, 2017: Brown: The horse often escapes the ethics barn on LI
Feb. 28, 2017: New five-member ethics board named in Oyster Bay
Feb. 22, 2017: Nassau DA wiretapped 3 former Oyster Bay officials, sources say
Feb. 12, 2017: Indicted concessionaire owes Oyster Bay nearly $300,000
Feb. 10, 2017: Nassau grand jury probing Oyster Bay corruption, sources say
Feb. 8, 2017: Venditto, Mangano corruption trial date set for 2018
Feb. 7, 2017: Oyster Bay changes borrowing procedures to comply with laws
Jan. 31, 2017: Assemb. Joseph Saladino replaces John Venditto as Oyster Bay town supervisor
Jan. 17, 2017: John Venditto campaign got $20,000 in contributions after arrest, records show
Jan. 16, 2017: Letter: Keep supervisor’s name off town signs
Jan. 14, 2017: Federal bribery trial for Harendra Singh indefinitely delayed
Jan. 4, 2017: John Venditto: Another powerful supervisor in disgrace
Jan. 4, 2017: Indicted Oyster Bay Town Supervisor John Venditto to resign
Nov. 29, 2016: Oyster Bay supervisor John Venditto presides over meeting, with no news of future
Nov. 15, 2016: Oyster Bay’s Venditto will decide in days whether to step down
Nov. 13, 2016: Joseph Mondello talks about Nassau corruption cases
Nov. 12, 2016: Nassau County sought OK of contract for Harendra Singh’s wife
Nov. 12, 2016: Venditto scandal impacts State Senate race
Oct. 20, 2016: Edward Mangano and John Venditto should resign
Oct. 24, 2016: Lawyer: Federal charges vs. Venditto will not impact town lawsuits
Oct. 23, 2016: Oyster Bay has no deputy supervisor in place if need arises
Oct. 20, 2016: GOP candidates urge Mangano, Venditto to immediately resign
Oct. 20, 2016: Mangano, Venditto arrested on corruption charges, Feds say
Sept. 28, 2016: Federal judge reveals what Oyster Bay officials haven’t
Sept. 1, 2016: Venditto says Oyster Bay to turn over documents sought by feds

Other LI officials charged with abuse of power


The Politics of Corruption: Ed Mangano

Nassau County Executive Edward Mangano

Edward Mangano

Charges: Conspiracy to commit bribery, fraud, obstruction of justice and extortion

Background: Six years after taking over as Nassau’s top official, Edward Mangano was arrested in October 2016 and accused of receiving “bribes and kickbacks” from businessman Harendra Singh. Mangano’s wife, Linda, was arrested alongside him on charges that she received a lucrative no-show job from Singh, Feds said. His trial date is set for January 2018.Read more

“Sadly, we’re getting confronted with public officials who are alleged to have abused their positions of trust.” U.S. Attorney Robert L. Capers

“It’s ridiculous, but I can’t say any more…I’m going to continue to govern. I’m going to go to work.” Edward Mangano

The latest on the Mangano case

Sept. 6, 2017: Venditto court papers seek dismissal of corruption charges
Aug. 30, 2017: Mangano’s wife to judge: Dismiss criminal case
Aug. 26, 2017: Brown: Edward Mangano, officially a lame duck, plots his future
Aug. 11, 2017: Curran outraises Maragos in primary for Nassau executive
July 26, 2017: De Blasio addresses top aides’ help to indicted donor Singh
July 22, 2017: Brown: Lawmakers in Nassau push anti-corruption reforms in election year
July 19, 2017: Edward Mangano’s fundraising dwindles
July 17, 2017: Edward Mangano loses shot at possible re-election bid
July 16, 2017: Editorial: Business as usual for Nassau GOP Inc.
July 13, 2017: Mangano won’t seek third term as Republican
July 10, 2017: Town sues former concessionaire, attorneys
July 5, 2017: Nassau GOP eyes Election Day with its anti-corruption stance
May 20, 2017: Nassau investigations chief Donna Myrill touts independence
May 18, 2017: Nassau GOP taps state Sen. Jack Martins as county exec candidate
April 30, 2017: GOP bill would ban public corruption felons from county office
April 29, 2017: Nassau GOP chairman recalls telling Mangano he was being dropped
March 15, 2017: Despite indictment, Manganos plan women’s event
March 1, 2017: Source: GOP searching for Nassau exec candidate
Feb 22, 2017: Nassau DA wiretapped 3 former Oyster Bay officials, sources say
Feb 20, 2017: Mangano, Nassau GOP lawmaker in unusual split
Feb. 12, 2017: Indicted concessionaire owes Oyster Bay nearly $300,000
Feb. 10, 2017: Nassau grand jury probing Oyster Bay corruption, sources say
Feb. 9, 2017: Brown: Charges against Mangano will hang over election season
Feb. 8, 2017: Mangano won’t face trial before 2018
Feb. 8, 2017: Brown: Mangano says ‘I’m not going anywhere’
Jan. 10, 2017: Mangano unlikely to be renominated for county exec, sources say
Jan. 4, 2017: Federal bribery trial for Harendra Singh indefinitely delayed
Dec. 31, 2016: Mangano says he’s been taking care of business since indictment
Oct. 24, 2016: Mangano took $17,007 pay raise despite ongoing budget cuts
Oct. 24, 2016: Federal charges vs. Venditto will not impact town lawsuits, lawyer says
Oct. 20, 2016: Brown: New reality for Mangano, John Venditto
Oct. 20, 2016: Harendra Singh is businessman at center of probes
Oct. 20, 2016: Mangano, Venditto arrested on corruption charges, Feds say
Nov. 21, 2015: LI pols attended galas, raised funds for Singh charity
Nov. 9, 2015: Mangano’s calendar: No appearances when he might be on vacation with Singh
Oct. 24, 2015: Town OK’d Singh’s contracts despite late bills, documents show
Sept. 22, 2015: Whistleblower says Nassau DA failed to act in 2013 on key documents
Sept. 13: 2015: Singh boasted about Mangano, other officials, gave them free meals, employees say
Aug. 22, 2015: Town helped Singh get $16M in private loans exposing taxpayers to liabilities
Aug. 9, 2015: Singh, contractor arranged, paid for trips for Mangano, other officials
June 30, 2015: Restaurateur Harendra Singh, involved in Oyster Bay lawsuits, has ties to Mangano, records show

Other LI officials charged with abuse of power


Long Island’s Extraordinary Seniors 2016

Live. Laugh. Give. Repeat.

That seems to be the life course of Extraordinary Seniors in the Class of 2016.

Each year, Newsday receives nominations from principals, teachers and guidance counselors in Nassau and Suffolk counties about students who exemplify the best of qualities: Kindness, perseverance, humility, thoughtfulness, determination, altruism. Those traits and more shine among the 16 seniors selected this year.

Quentin Thomson: A super-powered love for his community

More about Quentin

Community service is one of Quentin Akwasi Owusu-Adjei Thomson’s secret superpowers.

The graduating senior is involved with volunteer groups in and out of his busy school career. He credits the Leaders Club at his local YMCA for kicking off his passion for community work.

“That club really transformed me and developed my character by helping me in different endeavors and helping me to see my potential, and see where I would like to go with my future,” Thomson said.

He also said the National Honor Society “helped a lot in terms of developing me academically where I would like to focus.”

Read more.
(Reporter: Sophia Chang / Videographer: John Paraskevas)

Morgan Zuch: A cancer survivor’s path is forever changed

More about Morgan

At 2 years old, while other children were playing outside and starting to explore the world, Morgan Zuch was isolated in a hospital room. It was 2000, and with a diagnosis of acute lymphoblastic leukemia, her life was lived inside.

Her next three years were a blur of chemotherapy, medication, injections and surgeries. Zuch was considered a “standard risk” patient, and the cure rate for her leukemia was about 80 to 85 percent. But she wasn’t allowed to play with other children or attend preschool, for fear that her suppressed immune system could turn a simple cold into a deadly infection.

Zuch’s mother, Nancy, said her daughter at times suffered the most from the side effects of the chemotherapy, which she said included severe leg pain, constant nausea, spinal headaches and night terrors. At one point Zuch stopped walking, talking and eating for two weeks.

Read more.
(Reporter: Christine Chung / Videographer: John Paraskevas)

Triplets Carmine, Francesco and Marconi D’Auria-Gupta: Triplets who sing in harmony

More about Carmine, Francesco and Marconi

The D’Auria-Gupta brothers have been in harmony for as long as they can remember but the 18-year-old fraternal triplets have already amassed a string of successes as a family singing act.

Carmine, Francesco and Marconi started practicing tunes as children about a decade ago, but grew into serious singers with performances at Carnegie Hall, Madison Square Garden and at the 2008 U.S. Open tennis tournament in Queens.

Over the past few years, they’ve performed classical pieces with the Metropolitan Youth Orchestra of New York and as a barbershop group with brothers Gaetano, 20, and Leonardo, 15.

“Since we’re all related, the way our voices blend and work together just gives it a different sound than when it’s just four unrelated people,” said Marconi, a tenor.

Read more.
(Reporter: Will James / Videographer: Chuck Fadely)

Marie Albanese: A high-octane passion for volunteering

More about Marie

Marie Albanese has spent her high school career relentlessly giving back to make someone else’s life better.

She volunteers to bake and cook at the Ronald McDonald House, various senior centers and a local soup kitchen. She participates in clothing and shoe drives. During her free time during the school day she helps the speech pathologist by sitting in on sessions and assisting with the lesson. After school Albanese, who is 18 and lives in Franklin Square, volunteers to help autistic students, and when she’s not doing that she heads to a local elementary school to help kindergarten students with their homework.

Oh, and last year she led the effort to create a club called Saving Our Society, which participates in various community service projects, such as Alex’s Lemonade Stand Foundation, which raises money to fight childhood cancer. All this she does while maintaining strong grades and being a member of the cheerleading team.

Read more.
(Reporter: Deborah S. Morris / Videographer: Raychel Brightman)

Tyler Bloch: Tourette syndrome doesn’t get in his way

More about Tyler

Tyler Bloch is not only a top student and tennis master but is also a teenage foodie with thousands of fans.

Bloch, 17, cooks healthy dinners for his family each night, has an Instagram food blog with more than 3,600 followers and appeared on the Food Network show “Chopped” when he was only in ninth grade.

From curried lentil stew to charred scallion bruschetta to banana-oat pancakes — he’s driven by a greater purpose.

Read more.
(Reporter: Candice Ferrette / Videographer: Barry Sloan)

Ross DiBetta: Helping others, at home and abroad

More about Ross

In the winter, when lacrosse captain Ross DiBetta hangs up his gear, he’s leading the cheering section for the basketball team, riding a hobbyhorse mustang — the school’s mascot — its pole a lacrosse stick he made in woodshop.

What started as a group of a dozen of his friends who wanted to rev up the crowds at the junior-varsity games has grown into a boisterous group of more than 60 strong at all school sporting events. Dressed in white, sometimes black, or red, white and blue, they make up “the stable.”

“We take it pretty seriously,” said DiBetta, 18, of Mount Sinai.

That’s not a surprise to his school’s principal.

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(Reporter: Scott Eidler / Videographer: Raychel Brightman)

Danielle Fauteux: ‘Ready for anything’ as an EMT

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Danielle Fauteux never knows when the call will come that sends her racing out the door and off to an emergency in her neighborhood. It could be in the middle of dinner or while she is doing homework; one call came right before a school pep rally.

But as a certified Emergency Medical Technician and a volunteer with the East Marion Fire Department, Fauteux, 18, knows that when the call comes she has to go.

“I am ready for anything,” said the East Marion resident. “You can never gauge when it will be. It will be a school night and I would get a call at 3 a.m. and I would go to school; that’s happened multiple times . . . I had a call where I was out til 5 a.m.”

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(Reporter: Joie Tyrrell / Videographer: Chris Ware)

Krish Kamdar: An immigrant himself, he helps others adjust

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Krish Kamdar knows how tough it can be for an immigrant to adapt to life in the United States: He was one himself.

He arrived from India in 2004 at the start of first grade, and struggled to understand English and make friends.

He has turned it around and now uses the experience to help others in the same predicament. Kamdar, 17, became a volunteer at a center in New Hyde Park that helps elderly Indian immigrants adjust to life in the United States. Kamdar helps them obtain Social Security cards and fill out immigration papers. He also tutors Indian children who are very much in the same situation he once found himself in.

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(Reporter: Bart Jones / Videographer: John Paraskevas)

Erin Goldrick: Medical condition inspires an interest in nursing

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She has a metal plate, a metal bolt and metal rods in her head, and the back of her neck “looks like a racetrack or a candy cane” because of cuts made for the insertion of shunts.

But for Erin Goldrick, school has always been the most important thing to focus on.

“My parents — they’ve helped me out a lot,” said Goldrick, 18, of Hampton Bays. “They told me ‘education first.’ My dad said, ‘There’s only a little amount of time [to spend in school] to set up the rest of your life.’ ”

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(Reporter: Lisa Irizarry / Videographer: Randee Daddona)

Frances Gould: A zeal for social justice that started at home

Frances Gould has never been known to take anything lightly, whether it is her passion for the environment or a college-level course at New York University.

At the end of her freshman year, she conceptualized a paper recycling program for her high school and spent the following years putting it into place. She developed a proposal, contacted the local sanitation department and asked the school’s endowment fund to pay for recycling bins. Now, the program is in full swing, with paper picked up and recycled on a regular basis.

“This year it is becoming fruitful and we are seeing amazing results,” she said.

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(Reporter: Joie Tyrrell / Videographer: Chris Ware)

Kyle Kratzke: Turning a brain tumor into fodder for comedy

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If a brain tumor has a bright side, it seems Kyle Kratzke found it.

“He always looked at it as ‘Lucky me, look at what happened to me and how I’m so lucky to get the chance to do all these things and make my life better,’ ” said his mother, Lisa Kratzke.

Kratzke was diagnosed when he was 5 and has undergone eight surgeries. His tumor causes cognitive disabilities, including a slower processing of information and reduced memory. But he has used his tumor as fodder for jokes in the more than 20 stand-up comedy acts he has performed at clubs throughout New York City and Long Island over the past three years, some at fundraisers for nonprofits, others for pay.

“The brain tumor is why I got started in comedy,” Kratzke, 18, said.

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(Reporter: David Olson / Videographer: Raychel Brightman)

Alexander Perlak: A life-changing trip inspires a desire to help others

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Alexander Perlak likes to say he is motivated by a “service heart.”

He works tirelessly to give back to his community, and thanks to his leadership, more families in the school district had a little more for the holiday season.

As co-president of the school’s Key Club and student council, Perlak, 17, is instrumental in coordinating events that bring together students, parents and faculty to raise money for needy families. Through a Family Feud game show-style event to raffles to organizing the school’s food pantry, Perlak started many initiatives in the district that will continue after he graduates.

“It was really nice to see that my hard work starts a tradition,” said Perlak, of West Hempstead. “I think you always have to give back to your community and your school. They’ve done so much for you and you have to return the favor.”

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(Reporter: Candice Ferrette / Videographer: Alejandra Villa)

Liane Russell: Turning her differences into strengths

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If you ask Liane Russell what has most defined her as a teenager, the last answers you’ll hear are her vision impairment, cerebral palsy or leg braces that run from her shoes to her knees.

Rather, you’ll hear about a place where she’s as visible and vulnerable as a teen can be the

“I figure it’s a part of me, so why dwell on it?” Russell, 18, said of her disabilities. “I love chorus and Drama Club. With singing, it isn’t a physical activity and I can sing as loud as I want . . . With acting, I can be someone else and still be myself at the same time.”

Russell’s journey began when she was born nine weeks early and was subsequently diagnosed with cerebral palsy. Her right foot is turned inward and a vision impairment causes eye fatigue if she stares too long. Today, she wears ankle-foot orthosis braces and leaves classes five minutes early to navigate her school’s hallways and stairs, the latter of which she calls “a bit of a monster.”

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(Reporter: Michael R. Ebert / Videographer: Raychel Brightman)

Dante Vigliotti: A love of animals, a knack for business

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Animals hold a special place in the heart of Dante Vigliotti.

“Animals don’t have a voice,” he said. “When they need help, people aren’t always there.”

That doesn’t apply to Vigliotti, 18, who spent most of his middle and high school years volunteering and caring for pets at the animal shelter in Glen Cove at least once a week. He said the shelter doesn’t enjoy the same resources as others on Long Island, so he decided to do his part by undertaking multiple initiatives to raise money for the facility.

His efforts started in his parents’ basement several years ago after he bought goods from a local pet shop to start his own dog and cat supply store.

“I went door to door putting fliers in my neighbors’ mailboxes,” to draw attention to his business, Vigliotti said.

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(Reporter: Deon J. Hampton / Videographer: Barry Sloan)