Probation Imposed On A Former NJ Public Works Chief Who Used Town Labor For Campaign Assistance And Housework

A former politician from northern New Jersey was placed on probation nearly a decade after he came clean about using township workers for both personal household duties and political campaign labour.

Probation Imposed On A Former NJ Public Works Chief Who Used Town Labor For Campaign Assistance And Housework

As part of a new plea agreement with prosecutors struck last year on charges of unlawful taking, James Wiley, 78, the former superintendent of the North Bergen Department of Public Works, was sentenced last week to two years of probation, according to the Jersey Journal.

When Wiley first entered a guilty plea in September 2012 in Hudson County for employing town employees for personal projects, political campaigning, and household chores while charging the township for their wages, Wiley had only recently retired.

According to the prosecution, he frequently hired workers to do odd jobs around the house, such as building a hot tub and hanging Christmas decorations, usually on Saturdays when they got paid more. Wiley allegedly embellished their documentation to make it appear as though they were employed by the township. He also admitted to using employees for political campaign activity while they were on the clock.

Due in large part to Wiley’s cooperation with a state investigation that resulted in six further convictions, his sentencing had been repeatedly delayed. As a result, the probationary term was imposed. His initial plea agreement stipulated that he would serve a 5-to-10-year prison term for second-degree conspiracy.

“I dearly regret letting them down, because some of the best people in the world come from there,” Wiley said in his apology to the township’s residents.

As with others who followed the superintendent’s directions, Wiley should go to prison, according to a township attorney, who claimed that by “breeding corruption,” he was now benefiting from “cooperating against those people he directed.” According to Wiley’s lawyer, the municipality wanted to penalize Wiley even more for betraying his former coworkers.

Leave a Comment