Lobbyist Todd Howe made it clear to the public why he had decided to testify in a corruption case in New York. Todd told one of the lawyers whose question had really bothered him that he wasn’t interested in a “get-out-of-jail-free card”. Mr. Todd found it insulting for the lawyer to ask him such a question. Mr. Howe is a key witness to the prosecution in a corruption and bribery trial that was involving one of his closest allies who was a former associate and other free of his former clients. Joseph Percoco who was a former top governor is accused of receiving bribes. It’s reported that Mr. Joseph accepted the bribes through three business executives he was involved with a company known as “shell”.
Earlier, Mr. Howe had pleaded guilty to about 8 felonies that he committed in connection with the scheme. From Howe’s testimony, he believed that by pleading guilty the jury would rule in his favor and that he will avoid jail or maybe receive a lighter sentence for what he had committed. The court reported that Howe was so cooperative was a good source for relevant information that was required by the court. Howe was not having a light moment in the trial witness stand. On his third day in the court lawyers from Percoco’s side really gave him a hard time as he defended his credibility at all angles’. Barry Bohrer cross-examined him for almost four hours as he tried to get under his skin.
In Bohrer examination, he detailed all the people Mr. Howe had lied to try to extort money for the work they had done for him. The lawyer made Howe admit that he had broken several contracts with some of his clients a landlord, four mortgage lenders, a kitchen cabinet installer, 2 air conditioning companies among others. Percoco’s lawyer demanded that Howe explain all the emails that he had tampered with and later sent to friends and clients. In that line, Howe admitted having dropped Cuomo’s name so that he could promote himself. It was reported that Mr. Howe embezzled funds and never filed tax returns which totaled to almost $1.5 million. Finally, Bohrer wanted to understand why Howe decided to cooperate with the prosecution. But Howe said that he hoped the court would consider his honesty and that he never wanted to go to jail.