‘Bridgegate’ co-conspirator to be resentenced next month

Former Deputy Executive Director at the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey Bill Baroni outside Newark Federal Court following his arraignment. (Stephen Nessen/WNYC)

Former Deputy Executive Director at the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey Bill Baroni outside Newark Federal Court following his arraignment. (Stephen Nessen/WNYC)

A former aide to former New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie faces resentencing next month for his role in the George Washington Bridge lane-closing scandal.

Bill Baroni is scheduled to appear in court in Newark on Feb. 26, according to an order filed by a federal judge last week.

Baroni, a former New Jersey state senator and a Christie appointee to the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, was convicted on conspiracy, fraud and other counts in 2016 in the so-called “Bridgegate” case that sank Christie’s ambitions to be the Republican presidential nominee.

Prosecutors alleged Baroni conspired with Christie aide Bridget Kelly and Port Authority subordinate David Wildstein to close access lanes and create traffic jams near the bridge over a span of four days in 2013 to punish a mayor who didn’t endorse Christie.

In November, the 3rd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Philadelphia tossed counts against Baroni and Kelly that concerned the impeding of intrastate travel. The court upheld the more serious charges of wire fraud and wire fraud conspiracy, each of which carries a maximum 20-year sentence.

Baroni was sentenced to 24 months in 2017. He has been free on bail since his arrest. It’s not certain how the dismissed counts will affect his new sentence next month.

An attorney for Kelly, Christie’s former deputy chief of staff, confirmed Tuesday she is waiting for a ruling on whether the entire 3rd Circuit will hear her appeal of the November decision in what is called an en banc hearing. She currently faces an 18-month sentence.

Wildstein, a former high school acquaintance of Christie’s who testified against Kelly and Baroni, pleaded guilty and was sentenced to probation and community service. He currently operates a political blog covering New Jersey politics.

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