Today’s news:

Espada federal trial begins

Bronx Times

Former Senator Pedro Espada and his son Pedro Gautier were expected to face accusations Wednesday, March 14 in Federal Court in Brooklyn of stealing $500,000 from the south Bronx Soundview Health Center.

Espada has publicly called the trial a “witch hunt.” He offered no new statements prior to the trial.

In August, the Soundview clinics, which employ 200 and witness 100,000 patient visits per year, lost their Medicaid participation.

A judge has since ruled Medicaid will fund services at the low-income clinics until mid-April.

Espada is 58 and his son is 38. A separate tax fraud trial related to the Soundview case has not yet received a court date.

Susan Necheles, who is defense counsel, said both father and son deny any wrongdoing and will fight the charges.

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