Manhattan DA: Straw Donors Tried to Illegally Get Support from NYC Mayor During Campaign

In the case, the DA alleges that when some defendants maxed out their contributions, they schemed to reimburse others for their donations to the Adams campaign. The effort seemed highly organized. The defendants threw two fundraisers, at least one of which Adams appeared to know about, according to court documents, and used a spreadsheet to track straw donors and the total money that went into the campaign’s coffers.

A spokesperson for Adams’ 2021 mayoral campaign thanked the district attorney’s office for its “hard work on behalf of taxpayers.”

Evan Thies, a spokesman for the campaign, said in a statement: “There is no indication that the campaign or the mayor is connected to or under investigation in this case. The campaign has always held itself to the highest standards and we will never tolerate these actions. The campaign will certainly work with the DA’s office, campaign finance board and relevant authorities.

Prague spokesman Daniel Filson said, “The campaign is not charged. The office cannot comment on the status of the investigation.

A spokeswoman for City Hall did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Ultimately, according to Bragg, the idea behind the alleged scheme was to use the ill-gotten money to get favorable treatment from City Hall once Adams was elected.

“We allege this is a deliberate scheme to game the system in a blatant attempt to gain power. The defendants are charged with subverting campaign finance laws by improperly structuring campaign contributions,” Bragg said in a statement. It also strengthens the voices of New York City voters. When the integrity of that program is undermined, all New Yorkers suffer.

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