|A political operative convicted of bamboozling Mayor Michael Bloomberg out of hundreds of thousands of dollars was sentenced to prison Monday un a case that brought the billionaire politician to the witness stand and gave the public a behind-the-scenes look at his campaign and City Hall.
John Haggerty agreed to pay $750,000 in restitution to Bloomberg in addition to his prison term of 1 1/3 to 4 years.
Haggerty, a veteran Republican campaign consultant, was convicted in October after a trial that jurors called a crash course in the workings of politics. Besides the business-mogul-turned-mayor, the case drew in the state's third-largest political party and featured a coterie of Bloomberg insiders sketching their roles in his political, philanthropic and business affairs.
Since starting my career, I've worked hard to make a reputation in the world of politics and government as a dedicated, honorable individual. Today, my reputation is destroyed, Haggerty told the judge in a strong voice. If I could do it all over again, I would certainly do it much differently than I did.
He walked out of court briskly, without handcuffs, after state Supreme Court Justice Ronald Zweibel pronounced a sentence he said he felt necessary to restore the public's confidence in the electoral process and to serve as a deterrent. Haggerty's lawyers said they planned to ask an appeals court to let him out on bail during a planned appeal.