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Thomas Libous, high-ranking NY State senator, convicted, to be removed from office

WHITE PLAINS -- The No. 2 Republican in the New York Senate was convicted yesterday of lying to the FBI about arranging a high-paying job for his son.

State Sen. Thomas Libous showed no reaction when the federal jury's guilty verdict was read in a White Plains courtroom.

With the felony conviction, the Binghamton Republican and the Senate deputy majority leader will be removed from office.

Prosecutors said Libous lied seven times in 2010 to agents who were investigating government corruption, part of a U.S. attorney's crackdown that has led to the arrests of several New York lawmakers, including the former leaders of both houses, Republican Sen. Dean Skelos and Democratic Assemb. Sheldon Silver.

The agents were looking into how Libous' son Matthew got a $150,000-a-year job with a White Plains law firm in 2005.

Libous denied any knowledge or involvement.

But disbarred attorney Anthony Mangone testified that Libous promised to deliver business to Mangone's law firm -- enough to "build a new wing" -- in exchange for hiring his son. Mangone said Libous arranged for an Albany lobbying firm to pay a third of his son's salary.

Defense attorney Paul DerOhannesian attacked Mangone's credibility, noting that he was testifying in hopes of a light sentence for his bribery and extortion convictions.

DerOhannesian also noted that the only count against Libous was that he made false statements to the FBI. "No one has accused Tom Libous of kickbacks, bribery, or using his position to get a job for his son."

Libous, who is 62 and battling cancer, did not testify. He walked stiffly and used a specially padded chair in the courtroom.

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