Thursday, December 2, 2010

Sources: State GOP Senator Leibell to plead guilty to corruption »

Longtime Sen. Vincent Leibell (R-Putnam County) has told friends he is preparing to plead guilty to end a federal investigation into him.

Sources told the DN's Ken Lovett and Glenn Blain that Leibell will plead guilty to felony bribery and money laundering charges relating to non-profit foundations he controls and land deals that were arranged through those foundations.

Among the land deals was construction of a large house for the eight-term senator.

The guilty plea will resolve a indictment that is about to be unsealed, the sources said..

Leibell, who was set to leave office at the end of the end of the year to become Putnam County executive, instead retired a month early from the Senate. His resignation takes effect tomorrow.

He also agreed not to take office as county executive in January. He already has informed the chairman of the Putnam County Legislature of his decision.

"He has some pretty major problems he's dealing with," said a longtime friend who was informed of the decision. "His position is going to be untenable to continue in pubilc life."

One source said he was told directly by Leibell that he would be pleading guilty to a crime. Another source said as part of the deal, he'll serve less than two years in prison.

It's been reported that the FBI had subpoenaed records pertaining to a large home Leibell had built.

The U.S. Attorney's Office had no comment this morning.

Leibell and his office did not return calls for comment.

It will be up to the Putnam County Legislature to choose an executive.

Read more: