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Judge throws Peter Koo off state Senate ballot over challenge to his residency

Judge throws Peter Koo off state Senate ballot over challenge to his residency
Peter Koo
By Stephen Stirling

State Senate candidate Peter Koo was knocked off the ballot by the New York State Supreme Court Monday, a decision that could abruptly end his bid to unseat Democratic incumbent Toby Stavisky (D-Whitestone).

State Supreme Court Justice James P. Dollard ruled Koo’s candidacy on the Republican and Conservative party lines invalid after Stavisky’s campaign filed a lawsuit last week challenging his residency, claiming the Flushing businessman’s primary residence was in Port Washington, L.I., and not in Flushing as he claimed.  State law requires Senate candidates to reside within the district of their candidacy for at least one year prior to the general election.  

In his decision, Dollard said Koo did not provide substantial evidence refuting Stavisky’s claims that he continues to use his Long Island home as his primary residence and found Koo’s own testimony “to lack credibility.”

“From his demeanor on the stand, the manner in which he gave his testimony, his evasiveness and the inconsistency in his testimony, the court finds the respondent not to be a credible witness,” Dollard wrote.

Koo is expected to appeal the decision.

Reach reporter Stephen Stirling by e-mail at [email protected] or by phone at 718-229-0300, ext. 138.

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