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N.Y. lawmaker Carl Kruger pleads guilty to bribery charges

(JTA) — A New York lawmaker quit after pleading guilty to charges that he funneled bribes through his gay lover.

State Sen. Carl Kruger, a conservative Democrat who has held his Brooklyn seat since 1994, resigned Tuesday just before pleading guilty to laundering up to $1 million from lobbyists through Michael Turano, a real estate agent described by prosecutors as Kruger’s "intimate associate" and housemate.

"I accept responsibility for my actions and am truly sorry for my conduct,” Kruger was quoted by the New York Daily News as telling the court.

Kruger, who is Jewish, earned plaudits from the Orthodox community in 2009 for voting against a gay marriage bill, telling the Orthodox Hamodia newspaper at the time, "When it becomes an emotional, gut-wrenching issue, when it cuts through the fabric of traditions and values, then I have my community as the cornerstone of my decision."

Earlier this year, after Kruger’s arrest on federal charges — and his long-term relationship with his Turano became public knowledge as a consequence — the state senator switched his stance on same-sex marriage. Kruger ended up providing one of the votes to legalize same-sex marriage in New York.

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