A judge Thursday sentenced an ex-Town of Hempstead official to five years of probation for a felony conviction that followed his 2019 indictment after prosecutors said he stole nearly $60,000 from the Cedarhurst Republican Committee.
Nassau Supervising Judge Teresa Corrigan meted out the punishment to John Novello, 53, of Hewlett Harbor, following his guilty plea in July to two grand larceny charges.
The former Town of Hempstead Building Department deputy commissioner also paid back a negotiated amount of $41,000 in restitution as part of his sentence, according to his attorney, Jerald Carter.
“I take full responsibility for my actions,” Novello told Corrigan during his brief court appearance.
Prosecutors said after Novello’s arrest in September 2019 that he pocketed the stolen funds while serving as the committee’s executive leader. They said he spent donor money that was meant to support political candidates and causes on personal expenses that included mortgage payments and a winery trip, along with gas, groceries and restaurant meals.
Prosecutors also said then that from January 2016 to August 2019, Novello withdrew more than $20,000 in cash from the committee’s campaign bank account and…