Manganos’ corruption retrial won’t begin until 2019

Manganos’ corruption retrial won’t begin until 2019
Former Nassau County Executive Edward Mangano. (Photo courtesy of Nassau County)

The retrial of former Nassau County Executive Edward Mangano and his wife, Linda, was supposed to begin next week, but a federal judge on Tuesday adjourned the trial until January.

U.S. District Judge Joan Azrack — who presided over the couple’s initial trial this spring — decided to adjourn the trial so that new evidence could be viewed by the defense, according to Newsday. The trial is tentatively set to begin on Jan. 10.

According to a report in Newsday, the new evidence consists of more than 2,000 wiretaps of the prosecution’s star witness, restaurateur Harendra Singh. Some of the wiretaps are in Hindi and need to be translated.

When the retrial begins, Edward Mangano will once again face charges of extortion, conspiracy to commit federal program bribery, honest services wire fraud and conspiracy to obstruct justice, totaling seven counts. Linda Mangano is facing five counts of obstruction of justice and false statements.

The Manganos’ last trial went on for 12 weeks, but the jury could not reach a conclusion on the couple and the nature of their relationship with Singh.

Part of that trial was also focused on former Town of Oyster Bay Supervisor John Venditto, who was also facing corruption charges for his relationship with Singh.

Singh testified early in the case that he had showered the Manganos with free meals, gifts and a $450,000 no-show job for Linda Mangano in exchange for lucrative deals and county contracts.

Singh said that Venditto received similar treatment, giving the town supervisor free meals and limousine rides in exchange for millions in loan guarantees backed by Oyster Bay.

In mid-May, Venditto was found not guilty of securities fraud, conspiracy to commit federal program bribery and honest services wire fraud. But the Manganos’ trial continued for another couple weeks as jurors could not reach a consensus.

According to a report in Newsday, some jurors complained that it wasn’t clear which statements made by Linda Mangano were lies. In order to address that confusion, federal prosecutors filed a superseding indictment in August that included 11 examples in writing of Linda Mangano allegedly lying to FBI agents.

The new jury will not be told that this is a retrial, the New York Post reported last week. But Mangano attorney John Carman said it would be almost impossible to find jurors who have not previously heard of the trial.

“Unless [the jurors] were asleep, they’ll know [about the first trial]… we basically just had Long Island’s trial of the century,” Carman said, according to the Post.

Reach reporter Luke Torrance by email at [email protected], by phone at 516-307-1045, ext. 214, or follow him on Twitter @LukeATorrance.

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