Assemblyman Boyland Found Guilty of Soliciting Bribes


Assemblyman Boyland guilty of soliciting bribes | NY Post

This time, he’s guilty.

A jury Thursday convicted Assemblyman William Boyland Jr. on corruption charges for soliciting bribes from undercover agents posing as businessmen.

The political scion — who faces up to 30 years in prison — buried his head in his hands after going down on all 21 counts he faced in Brooklyn federal court.

In a surprise, Judge Sandra Townes immediately remanded Boyland after the verdict, citing his texting of a witness earlier in the case and his history of lying about his whereabouts as her rationale.

Jurors found that he repeatedly and brazenly made payoff requests to a pair of undercover agents seeking to hasten development deals in his downtrodden Brooklyn district.

The youngest branch of a once-famed but now broken political family tree, Boyland Jr. was also found guilty of lying about performing legislative work in Albany to earn more than $70,000 in unearned per-diem payments and for steering nonprofit funds to his campaign coffers.

Prosecutors hammered away at Boyland as a brazen payola fiend during the monthlong trial and leaned heavily on the testimony of his former lover and chief of staff, Ry-Ann Hermon, who eagerly buried him on the stand.

Hermon — who was famously caught on tape telling an undercover agent that the bribe he handed her made her “hot” — blasted her former boss and beau as a reckless and inept politician who sought out cash in exchange for political favors.

She was arrested along with Boyland and quickly copped a plea with prosecutors in exchange for skewering him on the stand.

Boyland, 43, turned down a 9-year plea deal in a last-minute change of heart earlier this year — and now faces the grim prospect of decades behind bars after the conviction.

His attorneys tried to argue that he was simply trying to coax campaign contributions from the agents and never intended to follow through on his promises to deliver political favors.

But his chances of acquittal faded under the weight of hours of surveillance recordings captured by federal agents.

During one drive through Brooklyn with an undercover, Boyland characterized his Brookyln district as a personal fiefdom. “Everything you see here, I control,” he boasted on tape. “I’m the politician,” he said.

Prosecutors also presented bank records and other evidence that showed Boyland eating his way across the boroughs, enjoying a spa treatment, and even sunning himself in Turkey while claiming to be at work in the state capital.

Boyland Jr. managed to skate on corruption raps in a Manhattan federal court case in 2011, but wasn’t able to slip through the grasp of the Eastern District.

Prosecutors Lan Nguyen, Robert Capers and Christina Dugger did not comment as they exited.

Boyland is just the latest in a parade of New York politicos who’ve pleaded guilty to or been convicted of ugly corruption raps.

State Sens. Shirley Huntley, Hiram Monserrate, Pedro Espada and Carl Kruger have all faced serious criminal raps in recent years.

State Sens. Malcolm Smith and John Sampson have been charged with various acts of corruption, with their cases still pending.

About SquarePegDem

A former state legislator turned NY Post editorial board member, thought-leader, public affairs consultant and commentator, columnist and blogger. Michael has appeared on Al Jazeera America Tonight, NY1/Inside City Hall, FoxNews.com LIVE, YNN/Capital Tonight, The Brian Lehrer Show, The Fred Dicker Show, The Capitol Press Room, and The Daily Show. His op-eds have appeared in the NY Post, City and State, The Legislative Gazette, Bronx Times, The Troy Record, Buffalo News, and the Rochester Democrat and Chronicle. To schedule speaking engagements, email MBenjamin9@optimum.net.
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