New York City Mayor Eric Adams admitted he helped the Turkish consulate get approval to open as he said it’s what politicians ‘do every day.’
‘When the constituency reaches out to us for assistance to another agency… you reach out to an agency and ask them to look into the matter,’ Adams said.
He went on to say that the only person he spoke to in the FDNY in 2021 was former fire department commissioner Daniel Nigro.
The comments come as the mayor’s Chief Counsel Lisa Zornberg said ‘There has been no indication that I’ve see that the mayor is a target’ of the public corruption probe aimed at his 2021 campaign and the Turkish government.
New York City Mayor Eric Adams admitted to his role in helping the Turkish consulate get approval at his weekly briefing on Tuesday
Though the mayor and his staff were quick to dodge questions about the current FBI probe on his 2021 campaign, Adams said that his involvement in the building is what politicians ‘do every day’
The New York Post reported that the FDNY deemed the Turkish consulate building ‘unsafe’ as officials tried to get the Manhattan facility open
Adams himself went on to brush off most of Tuesday’s questions related to the ongoing investigation while his top attorney minimized the probe. On Monday, he ignored questions about the probe that saw the home of his top fundraiser raided by FBI agents.
Just last week Adams’ phones and iPad were seized by the FBI after stopping him in the middle of the street.
The devices were returned to Adams within a couple of days. The FBI can make copies of the data of seized devices if they have a search warrant.
On Sunday, Adams demanded that the federal agency stop leaks of the investigation after CBS reported the FBI was looking into a 2021 text sent to the mayor.
The texts revealed that the Turkey consul general asked about opening the new consul building on First Avenue across from the United Nations.
Adams, who at the time was the Brooklyn borough president, did not reply to the message but did forward it to Nigro.
The New York Post reported that the FDNY deemed the Turkish consulate building ‘unsafe.’
Adams alongside former FDNY fire department commissioner Daniel Nigro. The mayor said that Nigro was the person from the FDNY that he spoke to in 2021 about opening the Turkey consulate that was under construction
Adams said he has made sure to support the Turkish community in Brooklyn that has the second largest population after Paterson, New Jeresey
The Brooklyn home of Adam’s top fundraiser and longtime confidante Brianna Suggs, 25, was raided by the FBI as part of an investigation into an alleged kickback scheme on November 2
Sources also told The Post that after Nigro got involved, the Department of Buildings agreed to issue a temporary certificate of occupancy.
Adams made it clear throughout Tuesday’s briefing that his role in the matter was not villainous but instead, an act of good politics. He added that Brooklyn has the highest population of Turkish people in the US next to Paterson, New Jersey.
‘Advocating for different constituencies is standard operating procedure for an elected official,’ Assemblywoman Jennifer Rajkumar said.
On November 2, FBI agents raided the home of the mayor’s top fundraiser and longtime confidante Brianna Suggs, 25, as part of an investigation into an alleged kickback scheme.
Federal agents raided Suggs’s home in search of evidence of foreign interference in the last New York City mayoral election.
Following the FBI raid on Suggs, Adams said that he ‘sleeps well at night’ and continues to support her.
He also added he has since retained a personal defense attorney, Boyd Johnson.
Agents are shown outside Suggs’ house in Crown Heights after the raid on November 2
Johnson said that his client ‘immediately complied’ with the request from the FBI and provided them with his electronic devices when asked for them.
‘After learning of the federal investigation, it was discovered that an individual had recently acted improperly… In the spirit of transparency and cooperation, this behavior was immediately and proactively reported to investigators,’ Johnson added.
Johnson did not specify the mentioned inappropriate conduct or identify the said person.
Adams has said he would be ‘shocked and hurt’ if officials found his campaign had done anything illegal. The Mayor laughed off a question about whether he could personally face federal charges.
Mayor Adams visited the Turkish Consulate General building on May 22, 2023, after it was vandalized
Adams recently revealed he has retained personal defense attorney Boyd Johnson
The mayor also told reporters he decided to give Suggs an opportunity working in politics that ‘African Americans don’t get’.
‘African Americans often don’t get to play on a national scale, as fundraisers as media, speech writers… I had a young brilliant young lady who was an intern, hardworking, willing to work as many hours as possible,’ he said.
‘We saw an opportunity to open the path for her that I saw others get… she worked hard, she learned, and people who met her were really blown away, and I’m proud of her and she’s going to get through this.’
It is unclear who will be the subject of the criminal case, if one emerges, and neither Adams nor anyone involved in his campaign have been charged with any crimes.