Three more businessmen have pleaded guilty to conspiring to bribe Bronx Assemblyman Eric Stevenson to pass favorable legislation, U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara announced this evening.
The men–Igor Tsimerman, Rostislav Belyansky and David Binman–all pleaded guilty in Manhattan federal court on bribery charges, according to a statement from Mr. Bharara’s office. Mr. Tsimerman also pleaded guilty to conspiring to bribe former Assemblyman Nelson Castro. The three men were arrested in April.
“With these additional guilty pleas, we are holding accountable individuals who wanted the law to be for sale and the legislature to be a bazaar,” Mr. Bharara said in a statement. “This Office will continue in its work to prosecute and punish those who attempt to corrupt the legislative process in New York.”
According to prosecutors, the three business partners gave Mr. Stevenson bundles of cash in an effort to expedite construction and prevent competition with the adult day care centers they were running in the Bronx.
Another partner, Igor Belyansky, pleaded guilty Monday in what the Daily News described as a plea deal for ratting Mr. Stevenson out.
At one meeting at a restaurant in January 2012, prosecutors reported that Mr. Tsimerman had paid Mr. Castro $12,000 cash. At another meeting at a Bronx steakhouse that April, the Belyansky brothers allegedly offered to pay Mr. Stevenson $10,000 in exchange for calling Con Ed and the Department of Buildings to expedite the installation of a gas line and push through other paperwork. But when one of the brothers tried to hand him an envelope stuffed with cash, Mr. Stevenson allegedly balked–saying he was worried surveillance cameras might be watching.
Instead, they exchanged the cash outside.
Mr. Stevenson was arrested on charges that he pocketed more than $20,000 in bribes. He pleaded not guilty to the charges and denies any wrongdoing.
His attorney, Andrew Patel, declined to comment Wednesday night.