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An embattled New York City real estate investor pardoned by former President Donald Trump contributed $69,000 to the campaign of Democratic New York Gov. Kathy Hochul, according to a report.
The contribution came under the wire from Alex Adjmi, president of A&H Acquisitions Corp, to the campaign for former Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s successor ahead of Tuesday’s primary. The $69,000 donation is the largest amount permitted by law, according to the New York Daily News.
Adjmi, a prominent figure in Manhattan’s Syrian-Jewish luxury real estate community, was convicted in 1996 of financial crimes for his involvement in a money-laundering conspiracy carried out on behalf of the notorious Cali drug cartel in Colombia. He served five years in prison, and, according to the Trump White House, “has dedicated himself to his community and has supported numerous charitable causes, including support for children with special needs and substance recovery centers” following his release.
Trump granted Adjmi a full pardon on Jan. 20, 2021, as “supported by Haim Chera on behalf of his late father Stanley, Robert Cayre, the Sitt family and numerous other community leaders,” the Trump White House said at the time.
Adjmi was among a group of 73 individuals granted pardons and 70 others who received commuted sentences from Trump on his last day in office.
In a phone interview with the Daily News Monday, Adjmi said he contributed to Hochul’s campaign because of her “crime policies,” believing she is likely the candidate most likely to win come November.
“I think she’s good on crime, and I think she’ll do a good job for the city,” he said. “I think she’s going to win, and I think she’s the best candidate that’s out there.”
Meanwhile, Republicans in New York have criticized Hochul on crime, namely over her support for the state’s controversial bail reform law that critics say allows repeat offenders to commit further violence because they’re almost immediately released back to the streets before trial on cashless bail.
Amid surging violence in the Empire State, Hochul has focused on efforts to deter the illegal trafficking of guns. After last week’s Supreme Court’s decision that said the New York’s restrictions on concealed carry permits for legal gun owners were unconstitutional, Hochul condemned the ruling and argued it would contribute to further gun violence in the state.
New York has some of the strictest gun laws in the nation, yet has seen surging violent crime in recent years.
For Republican gubernatorial candidates in New York, U.S. Rep. Lee Zeldin was polling narrowly ahead of Andrew Giuliani, son of former Trump adviser Rudy Giuliani, before Tuesday’s primary, according to the Daily News.
Adjmi has not made any other political donations in this month’s election cycle, though has contributed to campaigns for both Republicans and Democrats in the past, including a $5,000 donation in 2019 to Democratic Mayor Eric Adams’ campaign.