We welcome 'KRUGERGATE" to our ever grow family of "GATES" the real kind not the food kind
Federal investigators are examining whether Senator Carl Kruger, one of the State Legislature’s most powerful members, sought campaign contributions in exchange for political favors, according to court filings and people briefed on the case.
Mr. Kruger, a Democrat from Brooklyn who has amassed the Senate’s largest campaign account, declined to comment on the investigation.
But a Senate Democratic spokesman confirmed Friday that the F.B.I. and the United States attorney’s office in Brooklyn were reviewing allegations that Mr. Kruger helped businessmen with bureaucratic hurdles, with the expectation that they would hold fund-raisers for him.
One of Mr. Kruger’s campaign donors, Michael Levitis, who is suspected of serving as an intermediary between the senator and those seeking favors, has been arrested in the case and accused of lying to investigators.
In court filings, Mr. Levitis is described as soliciting payments from a confidential informant who posed as a businessman looking for help with an inspection.
Mr. Levitis, 32, is a personal-injury lawyer whose family owns the Rasputin nightclub on Coney Island Avenue in Brooklyn.
In transcripts of recorded conversations with the confidential informant, Mr. Levitis solicits a $3,000 payment, saying he will pass on $2,000 to an aide to Mr. Kruger, Jason Koppel, and keep the rest.
Mr. Levitis also tells the informant that he might have to hold a fund-raiser for Mr. Kruger, and they talk extensively about it, repeating the word “fund-raiser” in English during conversations that otherwise are almost entirely in Russian.
After federal investigators confronted Mr. Levitis, he denied discussing a fund-raiser and misstated the nature of payments he received from the informant, according to court papers.
Neither Mr. Kruger nor Mr. Koppel is identified by name in court filings, but Austin Shafran, a spokesman for the Senate Democrats, acknowledged their identities. Mr. Shafran suggested that Mr. Kruger was the “victim of an influence-peddling scam” by Mr. Levitis.
“Sometimes unscrupulous individuals falsely claim a close relationship to public officials which simply does not exist,” Mr. Shafran said. “Senator Kruger will fully cooperate with the authorities’ investigation into the fraudulent statements made by Mr. Levitis and hopes he is brought to justice swiftly and decisively.”
Benjamin Brafman, a lawyer for Mr. Kruger, said by e-mail that Mr. Levitis never spoke to Mr. Kruger and was invoking the senator’s name without his authorization.
“Senator Kruger is not now and never has been the target of this investigation,” Mr. Brafman said. “It is very clear that Levitis was playing the role of a big shot who claimed to have access to public officials.”
One law enforcement official declined to say whether Mr. Kruger was a target of the probe, which began in 2008, but said: “There is an investigation, and he is in it.”
NBC New York - Alice Mcquillan -
State Senator Carl Kruger, chairman of the finance committee, is instead a "victim," according to his spokesman. Senator Kruger's name surfaced after a bail ...
Brooklyn Daily Eagle - Raanan Geberer -
Carl Kruger (D-Brooklyn) on Friday denied allegations linking him to corruption. According to a Daily News article on Friday, the FBI and Brooklyn federal ...
New York Magazine -
Yesterday, it was revealed that the FBI has, for two years, been looking into whether Brooklyn State Senator Carl Kruger traded official favors for campaign ..
Carl Kruger, who represents portions of southern Brooklyn, sources said. Michael Levitis, the alleged middleman, is the owner of a notorious Brooklyn ...
Carl Kruger is the subject of an FBI corruption probe, sources and court papers revealed Thursday. The FBI and Brooklyn federal prosecutors are looking into ...
I wonder were this one will lead ?
Before there was the “Oracle at Delphi” there was Count Vampire J. Machiavelli
No More Schumer, Pelosi, Rangel, Engel
"After Four Years of Scandals it is time for the Lazio Team"