Metro

Cuomo blames criminal charges on incompetence, abuse of law

Disgraced former Gov. Andrew Cuomo claims there is “zero evidence” to support the criminal charges against him — ripping the legal move as “the worst combination of politics, incompetence and abuse of the law.”

In a lengthy rebuttal Sunday, Cuomo attacked the “unprecedented move” by Albany County Sheriff Craig Apple to file groping charges “without the authorization of or coordination with the District Attorney.”

“Apple DID, however, admit he had been coordinating with Tish James,” he said of New York’s Attorney General who earlier in the year announced the damning investigation that found Cuomo sexually harassed a slew of women — sparking his resignation.

“Tish James publicly praised [Apple’s] actions, using it to validate her sham report while announcing a run for Governor the same day!”

Cuomo’s statement on his website added, “These political bedfellows are abusing their office and putting their agenda over their ethical and constitutional duty, and no one is buying it.”

The 63-year-old fallen pol is expected to be arraigned later this month on a misdemeanor criminal forcible touching charge for allegedly grabbing former aide Brittany Commisso’s breast.

Cuomo also tweeted later Sunday quotes from a Wall Street Journal editorial titled, “The Curious Andrew Cuomo Complaint.”

Cuomo statement.
“These political bedfellows are abusing their office,” former Gov. Andrew Cuomo said in a statement.
http://www.andrewcuomo.com

He quoted a section stating that the “timing of the announcement … creates an appearance of political calculation.”

“No one is above the law, but politicized charges degrade the justice system,” the paper’s editorial said, as retweeted by the ex governor.

The statement — signed by “Team Cuomo” — also ripped the evidence presented to justify the charges as “uncontested facts proving nothing.”

Albany County Sheriff Craig D. Apple.
Former Go.v Andrew Cuomo claimed Albany County Sheriff Craig Apple filed groping charges “without the authorization of or coordination with the District Attorney.”
Cindy Schultz

“Despite Apple’s claim that there is ‘overwhelming evidence’, he has offered zero evidence corroborating the claim,” the statement said.

“Likewise the James report did not offer any corroborating evidence of the claim.

“Why after months of investigation and millions of dollars have both James & Apple failed to come up with corroborating evidence?

Letitia James.
Former Gov. Andrew Cuomo accused New York AG Letitia James of “political calculation” by applauding the charges the same day she announced her run for governor.
Scott Heins/Getty Images

“Because it did not happen,” Team Cuomo insisted.

The rebuttal particularly focused on when accuser Brittany Commisso, 33, said her boss had groped her breast — even though she had said all along that she did not remember the exact date.

Still, Cuomo’s statement highlighted how the date of the alleged attack was repeatedly changed, from Nov. 16 to later that month and then Dec. 7.

Andrew Cuomo.
“They’re bullies,” Sheriff Craig Apple said about former Gov. Andrew Cuomo and his team.
Seth Wenig/AP

He said investigators should have noted the “absurdity” of the latest date given that it was just two days after Lindsay Boylan tweeted her initial attack about Cuomo’s “toxic” work environment, opening the floodgates of other accusers.

“If this were true, that would mean the incident occurred 2 days after Lindsey Boylan started publicly attacking the governor AND that Ms. Commisso couldn’t remember that timing,” the statement said.

“It defies logic and credibility that the Governor … would have forcibly touched Ms. Commisso under any circumstance, but to now suggest he did it two days after Boylan began making public allegations is beyond absurd,” the statement continued.

Craig Apple.
Albany County Sheriff Craig Apple insisted Friday that the case against Cuomo is “solid.”
Hans Pennink/AP

“What is more incredible is that Ms. Commisso — who could not recall the day, week, or month that she was allegedly traumatically assaulted — wouldn’t have remembered that the incident took place the same week Ms. Boylan made sexual harassment allegations,” it said.

Cuomo also claimed that Commisso told him “directly” that “no one believes Lindsey Boylan. Everyone knows that you wouldn’t do that.”

“Politics is to be kept separate from law enforcement. Citizens choose their leaders in elections not by political prosecution of opponents,” the statement concluded.

Letitia James.
Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s team called the charges, based on AG Letitia James’ report, “uncontested facts proving nothing.”
Scott Heins/Getty Images

“That is the cardinal rule James and Apple have violated and justice dictates that it must be corrected.”

Apple insisted Friday that the case against Cuomo is “solid.”

He also told The Post Saturday that his officers “expected” Cuomo’s team to fire back.

“They’re bullies. They keep doing what they do, and we’re going to continue to move forward with our investigation,” the sheriff said.

“People can see through that smoke screen. We’ve tried to keep this from being a circus but they’ve turned it into a circus.”




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