Of all the money that changed hands in an alleged corruption scheme that saw six people arrested Tuesday, no one allegedly pocketed more than Dan Halloran. NY1's Bobby Cuza filed the following report.
While the charges against state Senator Malcolm Smith may be grabbing the headlines, the accusations against City Councilman Dan Halloran run even deeper. Not only did he allegedly pocket more than $20,000 for his role as intermediary in that scheme, he also allegedly accepted another $25,000 in a separate bribery scheme, this one involving taxpayer money.
"Councilman Halloran also accepted bribes in exchange for agreeing to steer some of his so-called member item funds to the undercover agent and the cooperating witness to a company he thought that they controlled," said U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara.
When the cooperating witness asked Halloran to steer him $20,000 in Council-allocated funds, he allegedly responded, "Absolutely, that’s easy, that’s not even an issue...I might even be able to get you more."
And, in a separate meeting: "Money is what greases the wheels, good, bad, or indifferent."
Ultimately, Halloran promised to steer them up to $80,000 for work on a Queens senior center, work, it was understood, that would never be performed. In exchange, Halloran, who at the time was running for Congress, allegedly pocketed $18,000 in cash and $6,500 in campaign contributions.
Halloran was first elected to the City Council in 2009. One of just four Republicans on the Council, he quickly developed a reputation as perhaps its most outspoken conservative. But according to Bharara, he may have also had designs on another job.
"City Councilman Halloran, who's a Republican, thought about what would happen in a Malcolm Smith administration," Bharara said. "He, on one occasion, mentions the possibility of becoming, as I mentioned, deputy police commissioner. On another occasion, he mentions, as described in the complaint, the possibility of becoming deputy mayor."
Now, Halloran could not only be out of a job altogether, he could spend 45 years in prison if convicted of all three charges he faces.