|Another one bites the dust...|
Wills, along with his family member / campaign associate Jelani Mills, were charged with numerous counts of fraud, grand larceny and falsifying business records. Wills was released without bail. Once released from custody, Wills screamed his innocence to a swarm of reporters.
The indictment focuses on missing state funds to a nonprofit he created in 2006 called NY 4 LIFE. The organization received $33,000 from former State Senator (now convicted felon) Shirley Huntley, who once employed Ruben Wills. The missing money was allegedly spent on personal shopping excursions - like for a Louis Vuitton bag from Macy's - purchased on the non-profit's credit card. The Attorney General stated in his press conference after Wills alleged milking money of a charity for personal gain “is about as low as you can go” which “constitute a stunning violation of the faith that he asked voters to place in him”.
The investigation escalated after Wills refused cooperate by providing an accounting of where the state money went. His 2009 city council campaign found records revealed payments totaling $11,500 to a firm called “Micro Targeting”, a corporation that allegedly does not exist, except for an unknown establishment address was a UPS store in Queens. Stories of fake invoices and false entries soon followed, and the case snowballed from there.
The accusations charges brought to Wills if convicted will be seven years in prison.
After being processed through the system, sure enough, there was Ruben Wills, screaming his innocence before a swarm of media. It's a scene we've seen played out before in New York City too many times in the past few years.
Queens has lately seeing it's fair share of indicted and convicted NY politicians within a one-year time span. Last year, State Senator Malcolm Smith was convicted for federal bribery charges for trying to get on the republican line for mayor by bribery republican operatives for support. He is currently awaiting trial with a few republican involved in this indictment. Former State Senator Shirley Huntley was indicted for funneling money to a fake nonprofit. To ease her sentencing, Huntley secretly recorded 7 politicians and 2 operatives, one being Ruben Wills.
Will NY voters ever learn?