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Haggerty group under fire

TimesLedger Newspapers

A campaign committee controlled by Queens Republican political operative John Haggerty, who is on trial for allegedly stealing $1.1 million of Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s money, is three months late in filing its disclosure report with the state Board of Elections, a BOE spokesman said Tuesday.

Haggerty, a Forest Hills resident, started the 28th Assembly District Republican Committee in October 2009 with a $20 deposit, according to campaign finance records.

In November 2009, about three weeks after he was elected to a third term, Bloomberg wired $120,000 to the committee, records showed.

Campaign committees are required to file their disclosure reports every six months with the BOE.

The last filing for the 28th Assembly District Republican Committee was made in January. It has yet to report its July disclosures.

Haggerty attorney Dennis Vacco could not be reached for comment.

If a committee misses a filing five days after the due date, a letter is sent requesting the committee to make the filing.

If there is still no response after five weeks, the BOE warns committees that they will be sued for up to $500 if they do not file their disclosure report.

BOE spokesman John Conklin said Haggerty’s campaign committee is on the agency’s “judgment list,” but the $500 fine has yet to be posted to the campaign committee’s account.

Haggerty is on trial for larceny in Manhattan Supreme Court for allegedly stealing $1.1 million of Bloomberg’s money.

Bloomberg made a $1.2 million contribution to the state Independence Party and the mayor said the funds were supposed to be used for a ballot security operation.

But prosecutors argue Haggerty only spent about $30,000 on ballot security and used the rest to buy out his brother’s share in their late father’s Forest Hills Gardens home.

Haggerty’s attorneys are arguing the donation to the Independence Party was a gift and Bloomberg had no control over how the money was to be spent.

Reach reporter Howard Koplowitz by e-mail at hkoplowitz@cnglocal.com or by phone at 718-260-4573.

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