The multiple investigations swirling around New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio – the New York Times in April could find no precedent for a Mayor under five separate investigations by six different federal and state agencies, including significant probes of de Blasio’s fundraising – have yielded their first indictments. Yesterday, Manhattan U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara announced the indictments of a de Blasio fundraiser and three members of the New York City Police Department, including a Deputy Chief and a Deputy Inspector, as well as the guilty plea of a fourth officer. The charges fall in two overlapping groups: “cops on call” charges of official favors being given to the fundraiser, Jeremy Reichberg, and charges that the four NYPD officials were using their authority over gun licenses to receive gifts such as cash, liquor and limo rides. (I know, readers will be shocked to discover that government control over gun licensing can lead to corruption and favoritism). The Mayor himself was reportedly warned about associating with Reichberg by a top aide.
Mayor de Blasio comes up for re-election next year. It could be a very interesting sixteen months as we see what else turns up between now and then.