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Kaloyeros Appears In Court: Lawyer Says Client Will Be Exonerated

Suspended SUNY Poly president Alain Kaloyeros made his first court appearance this morning.

Kaloyeros was the subject of criminal investigations by U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara and the state attorney general, both announced Thursday.

He appeared in Albany City Court Friday morning to answer charges lodged by Attorney General Eric Schneidermann's office, which accuse the SUNY Polytechnic Institute president of restraint of trade.  The formal felony complaint charges Kaloyeros with having committed three counts of "Combination in Restraint of Trade and Competition" in violation of General Business Law.

Here is Schneidermann: "A yearlong investigation by my office found that Alain Kaloyeros allegedly used his perch atop SUNY Polytechnic to engage in brazen bidrigging, using taxpayer dollars and abusing his power to enrich himself and his cronies. According to our criminal complaint, Kaloyeros gave insider information to friends and fixed the bidding process to ensure his cronies won lucrative contracts, funded in part by the state of New York. We allege that he ordered bid requests, called RFP's, to be written in such a way that only one company, his favorite company, could possibly qualify to win the bid."

The AG says the 60-year-old Kaloyeros emailed the RFP for the dormitory project to 59-year-old Joseph Nicolla, president of Columbia Development, a full month before it was even issued.

Kaloyeros showed up on time for a 9 a.m. arraignment accompanied by his attorney, ignoring reporters’ questions as he entered the city court building….and ignoring them again on his way out to a waiting car.

"Yes, he was released on his own recognizance. Does he have federal bail? Very modest federal bail."

Attorney Michael Miller told the Associated Press late Thursday that Kaloyeros "has always sought to make sure the right company was doing the right job on the right project. He committed no crimes along the way."

Part of the swirling corruption case unveiled by Bharara on Thursday that also included several one-time close associates of Governor Andrew Cuomo, Kaloyeros pleaded “not guilty.” A reporter got one more question in before Kaloyeros was spirited away:  "You have nothing to say to the taxpayers?" [car starts and pulls away].

Kaloyeros is now on unpaid leave from SUNY Poly.

Dave Lucas is WAMC’s Capital Region Bureau Chief. Born and raised in Albany, he’s been involved in nearly every aspect of local radio since 1981. Before joining WAMC, Dave was a reporter and anchor at WGY in Schenectady. Prior to that he hosted talk shows on WYJB and WROW, including the 1999 series of overnight radio broadcasts tracking the JonBenet Ramsey murder case with a cast of callers and characters from all over the world via the internet. In 2012, Dave received a Communicator Award of Distinction for his WAMC news story "Fail: The NYS Flood Panel," which explores whether the damage from Hurricane Irene and Tropical Storm Lee could have been prevented or at least curbed. Dave began his radio career as a “morning personality” at WABY in Albany.
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