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New York State Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver cannot be held personally liable for a $500,000 settlement the state reached with an Assembly staffer involved in a sexual encounter with Silver’s former chief counsel, though the speaker’s conduct in the case may have been as “cavalier” as the victim alleged, a judge has ruled.

Supreme Court Justice Emily Jane Goodman of Manhattan dismissed the complaint by “citizen and taxpayer” Joseph J. Santora, who contended Silver and his former counsel, J. Michael Boxley, were responsible for the misconduct that necessitated the state’s settlement with the former staffer. Taxpayers paid for the settlement.

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