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COVID-19: Dean Skelos Contracts Virus, Will Be Released From Prison, Reports Say

Dean Skelos
Dean Skelos Photo Credit: Matt Ryan via Wikimedia Commons

Disgraced former Long Island politician Dean Skelos will be released from prison after testing positive for novel coronavirus (COVID-19) to serve home confinement, according to multiple reports.

Skelos, 72, the former New York State Majority Leader was sentenced to 51 months in prison in 2018 on corruption charges after accepting hundreds of thousands of dollars worth of bribes while he was in office.

Skelos tested positive for COVID-19 on Wednesday, April 8, and had been in quarantine prior to his release from the minimum-security Otisville federal prison in Orange County, according to the New York Post.

It is unclear when Skelos will be released. He had previously filed a motion asking to be released from the prison due to fears of contracting the virus. Skelos still had more than two years left on his sentence.

“Skelos will be approved for furlough and home confinement, pending approval of his proposed residence by the United States Probation Department,” federal prosecutors announced.

Skelos was convicted in 2018 for using his political clout to steer jobs and curry favor for his son Adam. He was initially convicted of the same charges in 2015, but that conviction was later overturned. 

In total, Dean Skelos obtained more than $300,000 in payments through “persistent and repeated pressure applied to senior executives of three different companies that needed legislation passed in the New York State Senate and other official actions from Dean Skelos,” prosecutors said.

The schemes included the Glenwood Management Corp. in Manhattan, which paid more than $20,000 upfront and $4,000 monthly to the younger Skelos.

In exchange, they sought real estate tax abatements and real estate legislation favorable to them. At the same time, two other companies were paying thousands for “consulting contracts” in exchange for favors.

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