Ex-NY senator gets 5 years in prison in tax case

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Associated Press

Posted on June 14, 2013 at 4:33 PM

Updated Friday, Jun 14 at 4:34 PM

NEW YORK (AP) — A former New York state senator who was accused of looting health clinics to pay for extravagances including pony rides and who pleaded guilty to tax fraud charges has been sentenced to five years in prison.

Pedro Espada Jr. was sentenced Friday in Brooklyn.

The once-influential Democrat also was convicted in a separate case alleging he looted the taxpayer-subsidized clinics.

Espada operated the clinics in the South Bronx for three decades until prosecutors accused him of turning the network into a personal ATM.

Espada offered no signs of remorse before sentencing. He instead talked about the clinics' history of providing care to poor New Yorkers.

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