SALEM, N.J., April 16 (UPI) -- The ex-mayor of a New Jersey town was sentenced to three years in prison Tuesday for trying to get a political opponent to drop out by offering him a city job.
John Lake of Carneys Point, a Republican, was convicted in December after a three-day bench trial. Prosecutors said he tried to get Democrat Anthony Rullo to withdraw from an election for a township committee position first by offering him a part-time job with the sewer authority and then a job as assistant to the housing inspector.
Rullo reported the first bribery attempt to the Salem County prosecutor. He later defeated Lake in the election.
The state attorney general's office, which asked for a seven-year sentence, is considering an appeal to increase Lake's prison term.
"Prison is the right punishment for this shameless attempt to corrupt the election process and use a taxpayer-funded job as a political bribe," said Attorney General Anne Milgram. "We will not tolerate public officials who break the law to serve their own selfish interests."
Carneys Point, a town with about 7,700 residents, is best-known for its position at the New Jersey end of the Delaware Memorial Bridge.