Dean Skelos, a New York state senator and his son, Adam Skelos, were indicted by a grand jury on May 28, on extortion, wire fraud, conspiracy and bribe solicitation charges, the New York Times reports. Sen. Skelos is suspected of taking “official actions to benefit a small Arizona environmental company, AbTech Industries, and a large New York developer, Glenwood Management, that had financial ties to AbTech.” According to the charges, Sen. Skelos requested that payments be made to his son in return for these actions. The indictment also accuses Sen. Skelos of receiving more than “$100,000 in payments and health benefits from a medical malpractice insurer that provided his son with a no-show job while it lobbied the senator on legislative matters.”

Sen. Skelos has maintained his innocence but stepped down from his senate leadership position a week after the arrest. He also took a leave of absence from the law firm where he is employed.

In this case, the senator, his son and the entities face scrutiny for their actions. This is a good reminder of the importance of corporate compliance officers. It is vital for compliance officers to create, educate and implement internal policies that make it easier to detect these types of unethical behaviors by public officials.