Allegations of public corruption often make people think of scenarios involving direct financial gain. People may think of a police officer or regulatory official accepting a bribe instead of enforcing the law. Sometimes, they may also think about kickbacks, which are scenarios in which one party arranges for another to receive financial benefits for sending business their way.
Those are both concerning and common forms of public corruption that can lead to criminal prosecution in New York, but they aren’t the only widespread forms of corruption. Allegations of self-dealing could also potentially result in public corruption charges against an individual and can have similar negative effects on the public.
What is self-dealing?
Self-dealing involves someone in a position of authority or trust using their role for personal enrichment, often through projects or business deals. They may hire themselves as a consultant or expert or a project. They could also give a bid for a big project to a company that they own or have invested in previously. Essentially, self-dealing involves making decisions that are not in the best interests of local residents or others who trust someone in a position of authority but instead that person with authority. Self-dealing often leads to poor project outcomes and unnecessarily high budgets.
Occasionally, the eagerness that people have in attempting to prevent corruption can lead to improper accusations of self-dealing. Those accused of any form of public corruption will typically want to mount a vigorous defense both to avoid criminal penalties and reputational damage. Understanding what may give rise to false claims of self-dealing could help people better plan a response to such accusations.