Dominic CarterMay 17, 2018, 5:59 pmJun 1, 2018, 7:19 am

Jury deliberations begin in Mangano-Venditto corruption trial

3 days of closing arguments are over


CENTRAL ISLIP — Prosecutors delivered a fiery final rebuttal during closing arguments in the federal corruption trial of former Nassau County Executive Ed Mangano, his wife Linda, and former Oyster Bay Town Supervisor John Venditto on Thursday.

At times, prosecutor Catherine Mirable pointed directly at Mangano and Venditto. Mirable lashed out at their lawyer, accusing the attorneys of "misdirection,” and told the jury, “Don't let them take your eyes off the evidence."

At the end of closing arguments, defense lawyers remained hopeful that they can get an acquittal.

“We fought hard,” lawyer Kevin Keating said. “We remain very hopeful because of our jurors who have listened to every bit of the evidence, and I think they have seen through the government's case. So, we're feeling confident.

In their closings, defense lawyers went after the government's star witness, restaurant owner Harenda Singh, repeatedly calling Singh a liar who would do anything to escape prison time. Singh said he bribed Mangano and Venditto, including a $100,000 a year alleged no-show job for Linda Mangano in exchange for county contracts and more than $20 million in town-guaranteed loans.

The prosecutor said, "Ed Mangano's fingerprints are all over the Town of Oyster Bay loan scheme."

The charge also came from federal judge Joan Azrack, telling the jury exactly what is expected of them from a legal point of view.

After three days of closing arguments, the case belongs to the jury.

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Oyster Bay, New York