Kruger, of Brooklyn, was charged with accepting over a million dollars in bribes from "two hospital executives, a prominent lobbyist and a health care consultant," The New York Times reports. In exchange Kruger-- who had risen to the powerful position of chairman of the Senate Finance Committee--agreed to take official action on behalf of them or their clients.
Kruger used the money to fix up a Mill Basin, Brooklyn mansion with his "intimate associate" and co-conspirator, gynecologist Michael Turano. Turano was sentenced to two years in prison.
Before being sentenced Thursday, Kruger pleaded to US District Judge Jed Rakoff for a little leniency. “I am broken, destroyed and disgraced,” he said, according to The Daily News. “I have no one else to blame. This will haunt me for the rest of my life.”
Rakoff did, in fact, show some leniency. Citing past "good deeds," Kruger was sentenced to 7 years instead of the usual 9-11 years. Rakoff, however, still saved some stern words for the disgraced politician.
"That without any need to do so, Mr. Kruger entered into long-lasting extensive bribery schemes that were frankly like daggers in the heart of honest government," Rakoff said.
"We have only look at other countries to see that once corruption takes hold, democracy itself becomes a charade, justice becomes a mere slogan camouflaging a cesspool of self-interests."