Huntley pleads to covering up embezzlement – again

By Rich Bockmann

Disgraced former southeast Queens lawmaker Shirley Huntley pleaded guilty Wednesday in Nassau County to trying to thwart an investigation into nearly $30,000 in taxpayer funds embezzled from a sham nonprofit she was connected to, state Attorney General Eric Schneiderman announced.

Huntley filed false paperwork vouching that Parent Workshop, a nonprofit she set up and run by her niece and an aide, had conducted outreach programs that never really took place, according to Schneiderman.

She entered her plea in State Supreme Court in Nassau.

“It is unconscionable that an elected official would deliberately tamper with a law enforcement investigation into the theft of taxpayer dollars,” the AG said. “Former Sen. Huntley’s felony plea sends a strong message that those who abuse their positions to rip off taxpayers and tamper with investigations will be held accountable.”

Just two weeks earlier, Huntley pleaded guilty to mail fraud charges in Brooklyn federal court in a similar scheme to cover up close to $90,000 in taxpayer dollars that were embezzled from another nonprofit.

Schneiderman said that since Huntley is facing up to two years in prison on the federal charges, prosecutors recommended a sentence of five years’ probation in exchange for her guilty plea.

Reach reporter Rich Bockmann by e-mail at rbockmann@cnglocal.com or by phone at 718-260-4574.

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