Wednesday, April 28, 2010

More Trouble For Pedro Espada, Courtesy of Cuomo »



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State Attorney General Andrew Cuomo isn't done with state Sen. Pedro Espada, Jr. just yet:

A(nother) freshly announced Cuomo lawsuit alleges Espada and his son cooked up a "sham job training program" at Espada Management that has "victimized" at least 100 workers since 2005.

The scam, as alleged by Cuomo:

Labeling workers as "trainees" who were then paid wages far below the required state levels -- some making less than $70 per week.

These workers "typically worked for a two-week period with little training or direction and performed tasks such as cleaning bathrooms, mopping floors, and sweeping - the same tasks a full-time janitor performed."

“This was a sham job training program pure and simple with workers receiving no training and getting virtually no jobs,” Cuomo said in a statement. “Espada ripped off his own community in order to maximize the amount of money he could siphon out of the Soundview clinic, according to our Complaint. The Espada business model at Soundview appears to have been based on lies and deceit, abusing hardworking people for profit and cheating the state out of tax dollars.”

Cuomo says workers were duped into joining the program with promises of jobs and training that never materialized. Instead, they were just replaced by other "trainees."

As you know, Cuomo's already after Espada for allegedly milking his taxpayer-funded Bronx health care clinics to the tune of $14 million.

Espada, in turn, has accused Cuomo of merely being on a politically motivated witch hunt.

The AG is scheduled to have a news conference in just a few minutes, and we'll have more for you in a bit.

In the meantime, you can read the complaint for yourself after the jump.

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