In a case that is certain to send shock waves through New York State politics, U.S. authorities are expected to arrest Sheldon Silver, the powerful speaker of the state Assembly, on corruption charges later today, people with knowledge of the matter said.
The New York Times reported that the investigation that led to the expected charges against the Democrat from the Lower East Side of Manhattan who has served as speaker for more than two decades began after Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo in March abruptly closed down an anti-corruption commission he created in 2013.
Details regarding the specific charges were unclear on Wednesday night, but one of the people with knowledge of the matter said they stemmed from payments Silver received from a law firm that specializes in seeking reductions of New York City real estate taxes. The Times reported that Silver failed to list the payments from the firm, Goldberg & Iryami, on his annual financial disclosure filings, as required.
The amount of the payments was unclear, but another person has said they were substantial and were made over several years.
The Times reported that several months ago, federal prosecutors in the office of Preet Bharara, the United States attorney for the Southern District of New York, subpoenaed documents from a personal injury firm that also paid Silver, income that he did disclose.
It was unclear when and where Silver would be taken into custody.
His lawyer, Joel Cohen, declined to comment on Wednesday night.
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