Jury in Smith trial acquits him of all charges

JERSEY CITY AND BEYOND — The jury in the trial of former state Assemblyman and Jersey City Councilman L. Harvey Smith acquitted him on Thursday on six counts of bribery in federal court in Newark.
Smith was accused of taking $15,000 from government informant Solomon Dwek to help him get approvals for a bogus condo project.
The jury spent two days deliberating on whether he accepted bribes from Dwek. They looked at the six charges he faced – one count of extortion under color of official right, two counts of attempted extortion and two counts of bribery, and one count of money laundering.
Among those happy to hear the news was Jersey City school board member Angel Valentin, who has known him for many years.
“I have been praying for the man, and I think this a big victory for his family,” Valentin said.
Smith was one of 46 politicians and government officials arrested in July of 2009 after the conclusion of a government sting operation in which a developer, acting as a government informant, offered cash donations to various New Jersey political campaigns in exchange for favors. Smith maintained that he did not knowingly accept any bribes. For earlier stories, see the links below.

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