Jury rules former state senator guilty on corruption charges

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ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – A jury has found a former state senator guilty of five of the eight charges he faced, including bribery and fraud.

The jury had a lot to consider Thursday as they began deliberating all they have been presented with over the last few weeks.

Former state Sen. Phil Griego is accused of pushing the 2014 sale of a state-owned building in Santa Fe, abusing his power in the Roundhouse to pocket $50,000 in commission.

Wednesday during closing arguments, prosecutors told the jury that the case is straight-forward.

“The case is simple and the case is; this, the defendant was a senator and the defendant could not benefit from his public service. It’s that simple,” said prosecutor Clara Moran.

The defense then told the jury this case is anything but simple. They claim Griego never actually voted on the resolution in question and the details should not be glossed over.

“We’ve been here for almost three weeks. There were over 100 exhibits, you’ve heard hours and hours and hours of testimony, so when the state says to you this is an easy case that’s an attempt to throw you off,” said defense attorney Tom Clark.

Griego’s attorney says he did nothing wrong and they plan to appeal.

Griego faces up to 17 years in prison. Sentencing will begin in 90 days.

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