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Queens Chronicle

Former NYS Sen. Shirley Huntley pleading guilty to fed charges: reports

Related to state felony case

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Posted: Friday, January 25, 2013 5:09 pm | Updated: 5:29 pm, Fri Jan 25, 2013.

Embattled former state Sen. Shirley Huntley of Jamaica is planning to plead guilty to felony mail fraud charges, according to reports by the New York Post and Daily News, and is expected to admit that she used money from a bogus nonprofit for her own gain. 

Huntley could not reached by phone Friday, and neither could the spokesman for the prosecutor, U.S. Attorney Loretta Lynch of New York’s Eastern District.

Neither published report said what kind of sentence Huntley may face after pleading.

The ex-Queens lawmaker also faces state corruption charges. A handcuffed Huntley was led into a Nassau County police precinct back in August after she turned herself in to state investigators at the DA’s office.

She is accused of funneling public money to a nonprofit called the Parent Workshop that she founded with her niece and an aide, and then helping to falsifying documents to cover the tracks of the do-nothing organization.

In that case, Huntley is charged with tampering with physical evidence and falsifying business records in the first degree, according to state Attorney General Eric Schneiderman. Each of those felonies carries a maximum sentence of 1 1/3 to 4 years in prison. She also faces a misdemeanor charge of conspiracy in the fifth degree. Huntley’s niece, Lynn Smith, and an aide, Patricia Savage also faces charges in the case, as does consultant David Gantt.

The federal charge is also related to the nonprofit group, according to the newspaper reports.

Huntley lost her bid for re-election to then-city councilman and now-state Sen. James Sanders Jr. (D-Jamaica), 40 to 57 percent in the September primary. 

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