Assemblyman Bill Scarborough (D-Queens), had offices in Albany and New York City raided by FBI agents this morning, and indicated there would be indictments forthcoming. The FBI raid and investigation appears to involve Scarborough’s use of travel vouchers. But the lawmaker insists he’s innocent.
Via the Times Union:
Agents were at Scarborough’s office at the Legislative Office Building Wednesday morning and afternoon. He said agents took “just about everything” from his office.
An FBI spokeswoman in Albany confirmed search warrants were executed at Scarborough’s Capitol office, and “multiple” other locations, including New York City.
Scarborough said the FBI is misunderstanding how the Assembly’s voucher system works and believes he’s acted “in accordance with the law.”
In addition to the FBI raid netting boxes of records, the Assemblyman’s smart phone was also seized.
When pressed for comment from reporters, Scarborough said he doesn’t believe he abused the voucher system. He added, “I don’t know of any corruption.”
The Daily News reports that Scarborough filed over $30,000 in travel expenses in 2012.
The veteran lawmaker in 2012 led the Assembly in putting in for travel expenses known as per diems — $33,986 worth.
He has regularly been among the per diem leaders in his chamber.
A spokesman for Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver said he was not aware of the FBI probe.
Lawmakers receive a per diem payment for every day they spend in Albany – and an honor system governs the payment process.
Several months ago, Scarborough commented on a burgeoning idea that politicians who run afoul of the law in New York, should have their pensions relinquished. While he understood the sentiment, Scarborough acknowledged there might be legal challenges to such a plan. He added, “People should not be rewarded for bad acts.”