Former Assemblyman Anthony Seminerio dies in prison
by Daniel Bush
Jan 06, 2011 | 1380 views | 0 0 comments | 21 21 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Former Assemblyman Anthony Seminerio died January 6 in the North Carolina prison where he was serving a six-year sentence for fraud. He was 75.

News of his death was confirmed by the Federal Medical Center at Butner Federal Correctional Complex, where Seminerio passed away.

Seminerio was elected to represent the 38th District in the New York State Assembly in 1978. The conservative lawmaker was a popular figure across southwest Queens over the course of his long political career, but he will best be remembered for the way that it ended.

In 2009 Seminerio resigned after being charged with fraud for soliciting fees from businesses in exchange for favorable treatment. The money was channeled through a consulting firm that Seminerio set up and used to accept payments over a nine-year period.

“You decided to take a piece of the action,” Judge Naomi Reice Buchwald told Seminerio when he was sentenced last February, adding, “I don't know why you strayed.”

As he existed the courtroom, the disgraced septuagenarian expressed doubt he would survive very long in the prison system. “I'm 74 years old,” he said. “How much time have I left?”

Assemblyman Mike Miller, who replaced Seminerio in a special election in 2009, said the longtime legislator represented his district with “passion and dedication.”

“We should remember all of the good things that he has done for the community,” Miller said. “My heartfelt sympathy goes out to his wife and his children.”
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