AP NEWS

Appeals court orders ex-Cuomo aide to report to prison

March 7, 2019
FILE- In this March 13, 2018, file photo, Joseph Percoco, right, former top aide to New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo, reacts while talking to reporters outside court in New York. A federal appeals court ordered Percoco on Thursday, March 7, 2019, to report to prison next week. He was sentenced to six years after his conviction last year on charges he accepted over $300,000 from companies seeking to influence Cuomo's administration. (AP Photo/Mary Altaffer, File)

NEW YORK (AP) — A federal appeals court has ordered a former top aide to New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo to report to prison next week.

The 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Manhattan denied Joseph Percoco bail Thursday pending his appeal.

Percoco, who ran Cuomo’s 2014 re-election campaign, was sentenced to six years after his conviction last year on charges he accepted more than $300,000 from companies seeking to influence Cuomo’s administration.

Percoco’s conviction was an election-year embarrassment for Cuomo, a Democrat. Cuomo had once likened Percoco to a brother.

Cuomo wasn’t accused of wrongdoing, but trial testimony presented an unflattering picture of the inner workings of his office.

“Frankly, it’s not surprising that the people of this state have completely lost faith in government,” U.S. District Judge Valerie E. Caproni said at Percoco’s sentencing in September.

The trial and its aftermath occurred as Cuomo successfully ran for re-election last year, winning in a landslide.

The three-judge appeals panel ordered Percoco to report to prison by March 14.

A lawyer for Percoco had argued there were serious enough legal questions about Percoco’s conviction that he should be free pending appeal. Prosecutors opposed the request.

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This story has been corrected to show that Percoco ran Cuomo’s re-election campaign in 2014, not 2015.