Cecilia DowdApr 12, 2018, 8:48 pmApr 13, 2018, 2:03 pm

Witness: Town of Oyster Bay wanted to assist Singh in obtaining $1.5M loan

The restaurateur ultimately received around $20M in town-backed line of credit


CENTRAL ISLIP — The trial for former Nassau County Executive Ed Mangano and former Oyster Bay Town Supervisor John Venditto has wrapped for the week.

The court heard from about a half-dozen witnesses who spoke about alleged free rides, free meals, and the pressure to find a solution for Harendra Singh to get a $1.5 million line of credit.

Two drivers for Camelot Limos, a manager from Singleton's Restaurant and an attorney whose firm represented the Town of Oyster Bay were witnesses Thursday at the trial for Mangano, his wife Linda, and Venditto.

William Cornachio, a partner at the law firm Rivkin and Radler, testified about an April 2010 meeting at which time Rivkin and Radler represented the Town of Oyster Bay and Harendra Singh was trying to secure a $1.5 million line of credit.

"It was clear to me the town wanted to assist the Singh concession in obtaining the loan," Cornachio said.

Singh ultimately received around $20 million in town-backed loans.

At that April 2010 meeting, Cornachio testified that Mangano, Venditto, and Singh were present. He said he was surprised to see Mangano and Venditto because of their stature. At the meeting, Cornachio gave the news that there was no solution because the loan guarantee was not lawful. He was asked if following that meeting there was a sense of urgency to find a solution. He said he felt the pressure was on for him to make things happen.

Later, the court heard from two drivers from Camelot Limos who testified about a slew of trips, many billed to "Woodlands," which was Harendra Singh's account.

Passengers on trips included Sal Mangano, Ed Mangano's son, John Venditto, and Christine Venditto, his wife.

One document from the limo company, a trip sheet, had a memo that said, “VIP client extend all courtesies." One trip to New York City, the driver testified, John Venditto gave him a total of $400 dollars, what he believed to be a tip, but the defense argued that that nearly matched the cost of the trip, which was billed at $459.

Finally, a manager of Singleton's testified about how Linda and Ed Mangano would come in, eat for free, and would pay "once in a blue moon." He testified that they would get their meals comped before Mangano became county executive. As the defense has maintained, the Singh and Mangano families were friends for many years.

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Oyster Bay, New York