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Cuomo Says Former Aide's Corrupt Acts Were An ‘Aberration’

Mary Altaffer
Joseph Percoco, second from right, a former aide to N.Y. Gov. Andrew Cuomo, leaves U.S. District Court on Tuesday in New York. Percoco was convicted on corruption charges at a trial that further exposed the state capital's culture of backroom dealmaking.

Governor Cuomo spoke publicly for the first time since his former closest aide was convicted of running two bribery schemes while working for the governor and managing Cuomo’s re-election campaign.

Cuomo says he respects the jury’s decision, but feels personally sad over the conviction of Joe Percoco, a man he has referred to as his “brother.”

“He has two young daughters who are going to have to live with this trauma,” Cuomo said.  

But the governor says Percoco acted on his own.

“This is a total aberration from the people who work in the administration,” Cuomo said.

The trial also highlighted Percoco’s frequent use of state government offices while he was off the state payroll in 2014 and managing Cuomo’s re-election campaign, a potential violation of state laws. Cuomo says he thought Percoco was doing “transitional work” in the office, and tying up loose ends from his old job, which Cuomo says is allowed. And he says if Percoco was doing more than that, then it was wrong.

Karen has covered state government and politics for New York State Public Radio, a network of 10 New York and Connecticut stations, since 1990. She is also a regular contributor to the statewide public television program about New York State government, New York Now. She appears on the reporter’s roundtable segment, and interviews newsmakers.
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