A North Bergen Department of Public Works employee testified in Hudson County Superior Court today that former department Superintendent James Wiley forced DPW workers to buy tickets to Mayor Nick Sacco’s annual ball.
When being cross-examined by Paul Faugno, the attorney representing NB DPW supervisor Francis Longo, Oriolo said he didn’t think Sacco would help to clean up the corruption in the department – which is why he never approached him on the subject.
Previously stating that he had seen Longo at Sacco’s annual fundraiser, the mayor’s ball, Faugno questioned if DPW employees typically went to such an event at their own free will.
“Was it told to you directly that if you didn’t buy a ticket [to the ball], you’d have a problem?” Faugno asked. “Yes,” said Oriolo, who the defense at times referred to as Wiley’s brother-in-law.
Faugno followed up with “and who told you that? Frank Longo didn’t tell you that, did he?” Oriolo concurred: “No, Jimmy Wiley, you’d look to have a problem with the mayor, then [with] Jimmy Wiley [if you didn’t buy a ticket].
Just under a year ago, Oriolo filed a Hudson County Superior Court lawsuit against the township of North Bergen, the DPW department and Wiley for allegedly being punished by his employer for testifying in a grand jury inquiry into the DPW (h/t The Record).
A township spokesman strongly denied the allegations at the time.
Longo and Bunero face charges for allegedly campaigning for elections, as well as doing personal chores on private property, while on township time.