New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio (D) won't face charges in a fundraising investigation into the mayor and his associates, prosecutors announced Thursday.
“After careful deliberation, given the totality of the circumstances here and absent additional evidence, we do not intend to bring federal charges against the Mayor or those acting on his behalf relating to the fundraising efforts in question,” the press release from the U.S. attorney for the Southern District of New York says.
The investigation focused on de Blasio’s 2013 campaign fundraising practices, especially alleged quid pro quo contributions. But prosecutors closed the investigation Thursday, with no charges against de Blasio or his aides.
“We have conducted a thorough investigation into several circumstances in which Mayor de Blasio and others acting on his behalf solicited donations from individuals who sought official favors from the City, after which the Mayor made or directed inquiries to relevant City agencies on behalf of those donors,” the press release continues.
Prosecutors also noted that they usually do not issue public statements on investigations, but did so in this case because there is an upcoming mayoral election. The investigation into de Blasio had become public knowledge, with the press staking out de Blasio's late February meeting with prosecutors.
“Although it is rare that we issue a public statement on the status of an investigation, we believe it appropriate in this case at this time, in order not to unduly influence the upcoming campaign and Mayoral election,” it adds.
Acting U.S. Attorney Joon H. Kim, who issued the statement, recently replaced high-profile U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara.
Bharara refused to resign last week after President Trump requested the resignations of U.S. attorneys across the country, a typical move in a new administration. Trump eventually fired Bharara after he refused to resign.