Pennsylvania lawmaker goes on trial for ward election plot

Written by The Associated Press | Jan 24, 2017 3:00 PM

State Sen. Larry Farnese, D-Philadelphia. (AP Photo/Matt Rourke)

(Philadelphia) -- The trial is underway for a Philadelphia state senator accused of using $6,000 in campaign money to bribe a Democratic Party ward committeewoman in Philadelphia to help him win a 2011 ward leadership election.

Democratic Sen. Larry Farnese's trial began Tuesday in federal court in Philadelphia.

Prosecutors say Farnese bribed the committeewoman to help his successful candidacy to be become Philadelphia's eighth ward leader. The money toward her daughter's college study abroad program. He's charged with mail fraud, wire fraud and other counts. Farnese's lawyers say the payment isn't against the law.

The 48-year-old Farnese has been in office since 2009. The two men who held the seat before Farnese both went to prison for corruption.

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