Report: Indictment near over Ridge Hill project vote

Federal investigators are leaning toward indicting Yonkers Councilwoman Sandy Annabi over the Ridge Hill project, according to the New York Times.

Annabi refused to comment on camera Monday, but reiterated claims of her innocence during a phone interview and said she's enduring an emotional beating in the media.

"I can tell you we did a thorough review of Ridge Hill and there was no wrongdoing," Annabi said during a March 2007 on-camera interview.

The councilwoman initially opposed the $660 million development project, which is currently under construction. In 2006, she cast the deciding vote that gave Ridge Hill the green light.

According to Annabi, she switched from being a vocal opponent after developer Forest City Ratner came up with an additional $10 million tax payment to benefit the city. However, questions were raised about the reason for her change of heart.

Federal subpoenas first arrived in March 2007 and more as recently as last week. Annabi didn't receive one initially, heightening speculation that she was a target in the investigation. Annabi has retained the services of high-profile defense attorney Murray Richman.

"I think they're trying to squeeze Annabi because they think she's ? related to Zehy Jereis and Al Pirro and this whole thing," said Yonkers City Council President Chuck Lesnick. "Sandy is an upstanding councilwoman who's done nothing wrong."

Pirro worked for Forest City Ratner and Jereis, who is Annabi's cousin, was reportedly involved in the project.

sorry to interrupt
your first 20 are free
Access to News 12 is free for Optimum, Comcast®, Spectrum Networks® and Service ElectricSM customers.
Please enjoy 20 complimentary views of articles, photos, and videos during the next 30 days.
you have reached your 20 view limit
Access to News 12 is free for Optimum, Comcast®, Spectrum Networks® and Service ElectricSM customers.
Please login or create an account to continue enjoying News12.
Our sign-up page is undergoing maintenance and is not currently available. However, you will be given direct access to news12.com while we complete our upgrade.
When we are back up and running you will be prompted at that time to complete your sign in. Until then, enjoy the local news, weather, traffic and more that's "as local as local news gets."