Hefty fine for 'non-ethical' New York governor

Ticket trouble

The Public Integrity Commission said Paterson violated state ethics law by seeking and accepting five free 2009 World Series tickets from the New York Yankees.

The penalty is the largest ethics’ fine ever imposed on a state official, and marks the first time a sitting governor has been hit with a fine.

The PIC said it has fined Governor Paterson for “soliciting, accepting and receiving five complimentary tickets to Game One of the 2009 World Series for himself, two aides, his teenage son and his son’s friend.”

The watchdog panel slapped a heavier fine on Paterson than a hearing officer recommended. The officer found only that Paterson used “unsound judgement” and suggested a $10,125 penalty.

Patterson said he had “always intended to pay for the tickets,” a claim later found to be false, according to a PIC statement. “The governor’s false testimony is evidence that he knew his conduct was unlawful and, thus, is one factor underlying the commission’s determination that the governor violated” public officers laws.

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