The conflict between the city of Syracuse and Cor Development Co. continues. Hot on the heels of a recent permit win for Cor, two executives from the company — along with six others — were just indicted in connection to corruption allegations. The allegations stem from economic development projects in the Syracuse area.
Executive partners Steven F. Aiello and Joseph B. Gerardi of Cor were indicted on charges of bid-rigging, bribery, and lying to federal authorities. They stand accused of bribing Joseph Percoco, a former top aide to Governor Andrew Cuomo, and Todd Howe, a former lobbyist with Cuomo family ties.
The indictment states that Aiello and Gerardi allegedly paid Percoco $35,000 for numerous favors, including resolving delayed payment problems on projects. The indictment states that Percoco also helped to obtain a raise for Aiello’s son, who was employed by Governor Cuomo’s office at the time.
The pair also allegedly bribed Howe in order to secure a state contract for nanotechnology projects in the Central New York area. The partners supposedly conspired with Howe, along with the president of the SUNY Polytechnic Institute, to rig the proposal competition in order to obtain the contract without question.
Syracuse mayor, Stephanie Miner, has battled with Cor on several occasions. Although the charges she brought against Cor were ultimately dismissed, the city is seemingly trying to do its part to fight back against the perceived corruption within the company.
In addition to Cor’s executive partners, six other men have been brought up on related charges. Todd Howe pleaded guilty to eight felonies back in September and has been cooperating with authorities. Although all eight men have proclaimed their innocence, things aren’t looking so good for these defendants. While only 4% of personal injury cases ever see the inside of a courtroom, it looks like this criminal case — which is more concerned with offenses against the entire city — will get its day in court. And chances are, we’ll be reading about this case for months to come.