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May 21, 2019

State Sen. John Sampson is in plea talks to avoid trial on additional corruption charges

September 28, 2018
New York state Sen. John Sampson leaves federal court after jury selection in his obstruction of justice trial in Brooklyn in 2015. (Seth Wenig / AP)

Disgraced State Sen. John Sampson is in plea talks that could extend his prison sentence for corruption.

The revelation came Thursday in Brooklyn Federal Court during a hearing on how prosecutors would proceed in light of an appeals decision that reinstated two embezzlement charges against the former Brooklyn pol.

“The parties are in plea negotiations,” Assistant U.S. Attorney Alex Solomon said, adding he thought the talks could reach a conclusion within 30 days.

In a strange moment Sampson — who had noticeably lost weight while serving his five-year sentence — requested that he be transferred back to a prison in Fairton, N.J., rather than stay in the Metropolitan Detention Center as plea talks continue.

“The conditions weren’t too accommodating,” Sampson said, referring to MDC.

He suggested that Judge Dora Irizarry allow him to take a “furlough” from Federal Correctional Institution At Fairton to allow him to attend any upcoming court appearances, with the help of his family.

“I’d have my relatives pick me up and bring me back the same day,” Sampson said, wearing tan prison garb.

The request was denied.

“Have your relatives pick you up? No, that’s not going to happen,” Irizarry said.

Solomon said the only practical way to ensure Sampson’s presence at an upcoming hearing would be for him to remain behind bars at the federal lockup in Lower Manhattan.

Sampson was convicted in 2015 of obstructing justice and lying to the FBI.

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