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Jurors Find Ex-Officials Guilty in North Hempstead Building Department Trial

Roger Corbin and Neville Mullings found guilty on bribery, official misconduct charges.

A jury has found an ex-Nassau County Legislator and the former head of the North Hempstead Community Development agency guilty of bribery charges and official misconduct.

Jurors in the courtroom at the in Mineola returned the verdicts concerning Roger Corbin and Neville Mullings, respectively Tuesday as part of the corruption trial surrounding the North Hempstead Building Department in a “pay-to-play” scheme related to a development in New Cassel.

Corbin was found guilty of receiving bribes and official misconduct but not guilty of falsifying business records and a second count of official misconduct. Mullings was found to be not guilty of defrauding the government, falsifying business records and two counts of official misconduct.

Counts of grand larceny leveled against former Nassau Legislator Patrick Williams were returned not guilty. Charges were dropped against former building commissioner David Wasserman in June.

The men were accused of collaborating to award a development project in New Cassel to builder Ranjan Batheja in exchange of bribery payments of $400,000. Batheja had detailing how the scheme would work. It was this meeting and Batheja’s testimony which helped to convict Mullings.

A 10-day break is scheduled to begin Thursday and Justice Alan Honorof instructed jurors to return verdicts on 12 counts before the break occurred so that if one or more jurors could not return, a mistrial on those counts could be avoided.

Fact checker July 19, 2012 at 12:56 AM
Which part of this trial has anything to do with the building department?
Geoffrey Walter (Editor) July 19, 2012 at 01:01 AM
The defendants involved were part of the North Hempstead Building Department. Wasserman was building commissioner, some of the tenants involved would be the North Hempstead Community Development Agency; please read background information: http://mineola.patch.com/articles/developer-sheds-light-on-north-hempstead-building-scandal
Fact checker July 19, 2012 at 02:28 AM
Please read the indictment, or better yet sit through a day of the trial. The only connection this trial has to the building department is that a former building commissioner was a defendan. However, before he was dismissed from the case, he as charged for his role as the CDA chairman. The link you provided shares the same misleading type of headline.
Geoffrey Walter (Editor) July 19, 2012 at 03:38 AM
Wasserman served as both building department commissioner and chair of CDA and states so in the body of the article. I have attended the trial and the article details the testimony of the builder involved with the New Cassel project.
Fact checker July 19, 2012 at 03:50 AM
Then I ask again, how is this a building department trial? Identifyna single allegation of malfeasance involving the building department. What did the builder say about the building department? Nothing would be the correct answer. This trial involves the CDA, and the actions of CDA and county officials relative to a CDA project. It does not involve the building department, and the fact that you continue to defend that it somehow does because of one individual's job title saysnalot about your reporting. Not much more to say. I will find my news elsewhere. Thank you.
John Carway July 19, 2012 at 08:23 PM
This exchange sounds like Fact Checker is more than just a disgruntled reader who wants to have all the correct i's dotted and t's crossed. He or she sounds like a political apologist for the Town of North Hempstead. Supervisor Jon Kaiman has been trying mightily to rehabilitate the limage of the Building Department ever since 4I members of that Department were arrested in 2007 in what'd the DA then described as the most corrupt building department in the state if I remember it correctly.. So when the Commissioner, wearing another hat is accused in the current case, I can see where the public and Patch can see a connection, PR considerations and political spin not withstanding.
John Carway July 19, 2012 at 08:28 PM
Correction. It was 4 not 41 members of the Building Department who were arrested in 2007. The 41 was the result of big fingers on a very small phone keyboard.

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