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The 14th District Legislative team of Senator Linda R. Greenstein, Assemblyman Wayne DeAngelo and Assemblyman Dan Benson, D-Middlesex/Mercer, issued the following statements today regarding the indictment of Hamilton’s mayor, John Bencivengo on extortion and money laundering charges:

Senator Linda Greenstein:

“Just eight weeks ago, I called for Hamilton Mayor John Bencivengo to resign from office so that the residents of Hamilton would be shielded from having to be drawn into his legal defense. In light of the four indictments for charges ranging from extortion to money laundering that came down today, it is abundantly clear that his legal troubles are not going away. It is also clear that he will neither be able to perform the functions required as mayor nor be able to provide the sound leadership that the residents of Hamilton deserve. For the good of the people of Hamilton, who deserve elected officials free from the shadow of corruption that is now following him around – we, therefore, reiterate our call for John Bencivengo to resign immediately from his position as mayor.”

Assemblyman Wayne DeAngelo:

“The indictment handed down today paints a stunning picture of deliberate attempts to not only use power as an elected official for his own financial gain, but also to use undo influence in the selection of a candidate for the New Jersey General Assembly and a member of the Hamilton Township Board of Education. Our District and town deserve better. It is time for the mayor to vacate his office so that the residents of Hamilton Township can have the assurance that there is no further illicit influence over the public coffers or elected officials.”

Assemblyman Dan Benson:

“At this point, Mayor Bencivengo needs to focus on his legal defense against these very serious charges. He cannot do that and provide residents with the leadership they need during these difficult times. It is incumbent upon him to do what is best for Hamilton to restore the trust of residents and protect our taxpayers. I would hope the Hamilton Council and all elected officials representing Hamilton’s residents would join us in calling on the Mayor to do the right thing and resign.”