THIS STORY HAS BEEN FORMATTED FOR EASY PRINTING

Judge says Paterson gave faulty testimony

Associated Press / August 27, 2010

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ALBANY, N.Y. — A special investigation has concluded that Governor David Paterson’s testimony about his plans to pay for World Series tickets last year was “inaccurate and misleading’’ and warrants consideration of criminal charges by a prosecutor.

In a report yesterday, former state Chief Judge Judith S. Kaye said four of five tickets to the World Series opening game between the New York Yankees and the Philadelphia Phillies were paid for following a press inquiry from the New York Post newspaper. She said there is a question whether Paterson gave “intentionally false testimony’’ to the Commission on Public Integrity about having written an $850 check in advance for two tickets.

Commission staff recommended last week that Paterson be fined more than $90,000 in civil penalties for soliciting and accepting the tickets in violation of ethics law.

However, Kaye said the perjury issue was “clouded’’ by the way Paterson’s testimony was given, with the entries read aloud to the legally blind governor. If Paterson had personally examined the check used to pay for two tickets, which was not in his handwriting, that “would have been obvious to the governor,’’ she said.

Paterson’s private attorney, Theodore Wells Jr., said Paterson did not lie when he testified. He noted Kaye’s report does not recommend bringing charges or conclude Paterson intended to give false testimony.

Paterson has denied any wrongdoing. He eventually paid for two tickets, and staff members paid for two. He maintains going to the game was part of a ceremonial public duty as governor that entitled him to a ticket.

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