The office of New York City Mayor Eric Adams lashed out on Sunday against any FBI employee who might have “improperly leaked details” of his implication in a federal corruption probe.
This comes after The New York Times reported that federal authorities were probing Adams for possibly improperly pressuring New York Fire Department officials into clearing the opening of a Manhattan high-rise to house the Turkish consulate in spite of safety concerns about the 35-story building.
City Hall Chief Counsel Lisa Zornberg reacted to the report in a statement, writing, “The mayor and our team are continuing to work with investigators and cooperate. We hope that investigators will continue to cooperate with us and reprimand any federal officer who has improperly leaked details about this investigation as such conduct could prejudice the public and undermines the integrity of our law enforcement process.”
The Times reported Adams’ unusual intervention came in the summer of 2021, after he won the Democratic mayoral primary, but before the November general election.
At the time, Adams was serving his second term as Brooklyn borough president, and the role’s jurisdiction does not include Manhattan. The FBI reportedly had been questioning FDNY officials since last spring.
Federal law enforcement officials and other prosecutors have not publicly disclosed the subject of the corruption probe, but an FBI search warrant for the Brooklyn home of Adams’ top campaign fundraiser, Brianna Suggs, reportedly revealed the federal investigation has centered, at least in part, around whether Adams’ campaign conspired with the Turkish government to illegally funnel foreign money into its campaign funds.
On Friday, Adams’ attorney, Boyd Johnson, revealed in a statement that FBI agents quietly seized several electronics from Adams, including phones and an iPad, earlier in the week as part of an investigation into political fundraising during his 2021 campaign. The seizures happened as Adams was leaving a public event in Manhattan on Monday night.
In a statement issued by the mayor’s campaign, Adams said, “As a borough president, part of my routine role was to notify government agencies of issues on behalf of constituents and constituencies. I have not been accused of wrongdoing, and I will continue to cooperate with investigators.”
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