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November 6, 2015

What We Learned from Doc’s Testimony in Sheldon Silver Corruption Trial

Dr. Robert Taub, the cancer research doctor at the center of the corruption trial of indicted former New York Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver, testified in federal court yesterday.

Here is what we learned from that testimony:

  • An “opaque” process in the state assembly allowed Silver to “quietly direct state funding to medical research in exchange for patient referrals that netted him millions in referral fees from his law firm.” (Wall Street Journal)
     
  • According to Taub, “he began sending patients to Silver in the early 2000s in hopes of getting his support for mesothelioma research. Prosecutors say Silver reciprocated by quietly channeling $500,000 in state grants to Taub’s research project.” (Albany Times-Union)
     
  • “Silver knows nothing about asbestos litigation and wasn’t being paid for his legal expertise, only for making it rain gold.” (NY Post)
  • Dr. Taub said there was a “pattern” in which Silver would request patient referrals “whenever he requested help with funding for research,” and Taub said he gave those referrals to “incentivize” Silver. (Wall Street Journal)
     
  • The relationship between Taub and Silver allegedly was “based on the referrals,” which “netted Silver more than $3 million in finder’s fees.” (NY Post)
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