Bruno may seek reimbursement of defense costs

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Updated: 5/19 9:26 pm

ALBANY, N.Y. -- The former senate majority leader recently found not guilty of fraud is eligible to apply for reimbursement of the millions he spent on his defense.

Joe Bruno, 85, was accused of federal corruption and over the last eight years there have been two trials and an appeal.

Now that he's been acquitted with a jury finding him not guilty of honest service mail fraud on Friday, the senator can apply to get all the money spent back.

“Anybody in public office, higher office that is charged with a crime and is acquitted gets their reasonable legal expenses back,” Bruno said. “And that’s what I want.”

He would have to apply to the State Attorney General under a provision of the public officer’s law. Bruno said his legal expenses amount to nearly $4 million, and he said the cost would fall on taxpayers.

“What ought to be a call to anybody’s attention is the federal government,” he said. “The United States of America has 4,500 criminal laws on the books, and they can go after any citizen in the United States and persecute them, prosecute them and nobody pretty much makes pep about that.”

The Attorney General's Office said they have not received any such request yet.


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