Pedro Espada Found Guilty of Stealing From Bronx Clinic
BROOKLYN — Former state Sen. Pedro Espada Jr. was found guilty on four counts of theft after a Brooklyn federal court jury delivered a partial verdict on Monday, after 11 days of deliberations in the embezzlement trial of the Bronx power broker and his son, according to reports.
Hours later, the jury said it was deadlocked on the remaining charges against Espada and his son, according to the New York Post.
"We cannot reach a unanimous decision on any of the other remaining counts," a note from jurors said, according to the newspaper.
"We are prepared to accept that," prosecutors told the judge.
The ex-senate majority leader and his son, Pedro G. Espada, were charged with stealing more than $500,000 from the Soundview Health Center, a nonprofit that the Bronx politician controlled for decades.
The two were accused of having the federally funded clinic pay for a range such personal expenses from Puerto Rican vacations to sushi dinners, from 2005 to 2007, according to the Post.
After the jurors issued their four guilty counts for Espada Jr., they reportedly went back to discussions on the remaining four charges.
They could not reach an agrement on the remaining charges. They also failed to reach a verdict on any of the counts against his son, who was a member of the state Assembly.
The disgraced Espada Jr. faces 10 years in prison for every guilty count, the Post said.
"We're confident in our innocence. This is a process," Espada Jr. said, according to NY1. "We respect the process and let's see what happens. They're deliberating and we have full respect for the jurors."
Espada's lawyer Susan Necheles called it a "sad day" for the Bronx politician and his family.
"The health care center has been destroyed, and many people who were getting great health care over the years no longer are able to get that health care," she said. "I think to all observers in the court room... it was clear that some of the jurors also were very upset about this verdict."
With reporting by Theodore Parisienne.