Posted on 01 Feb 2010
At a hearing Friday in New York County Supreme Court, Judge James Yates dismissed criminal charges against more former insurance executives who had pleaded guilty to charges in connection with New York's bid-rigging investigation involving Marsh Inc.
In addition, Judge Yates reduced eight other individuals' felony guilty pleas to misdemeanors. Five will have the downgraded charges dropped entirely in six months, through a legal mechanism called adjournment in contemplation of dismissal, the judge said.
The action, which came at the request of the New York attorney general's office, followed a similar motion last week involving several individuals who cooperated with the state's investigation. Judge Yates had dismissed or reduced similar criminal charges against nine other individuals in the case. The charges were brought originally by former New York Attorney General Eliot Spitzer, who had secured 21 guilty pleas as part of his probe into contingent commission practices in the insurance industry. The individuals had accepted plea agreements with prosecutors and cooperated in the state's investigation. Eight other executives were indicted in 2005 and later faced trial.
Prosecutors from New York Attorney General Andrew Cuomo’s office, which inherited the case, asked the judge to grant the dismissals “in the interest of justice.”
“Considering the related cases, and the results that were obtained with respect to the other individuals in this case, this is the most just and appropriate thing to do at this time,” the judge said in granting the motions.