NY Assembly Leader Hires Porn Lawyer To Handle Harassment Lawsuit

Sheldon Silver

New York Assembly leader Sheldon Silver has hired the former Penthouse lawyer to defend him in the Vito Lopez sexual harassment lawsuit. Of course this will be put on the taxpayers’ tab.

The New York Daily News has the scoop:

A prominent lawyer who once successfully represented Penthouse magazine owner Bob Guccione in a sex harassment lawsuit has been hired by Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver, the Daily News has learned.

Silver tabbed Bettina Plevan, a partner at Proskauer Rose, to represent him in a lawsuit brought by two legislative staffers over his admitted mishandling of the Vito Lopez sexual harassment scandal, sources familiar with the hiring told The News.

Plevan has made a name for herself representing employers in discrimination cases. In one, she successfully appealed a $4 million sex harassment award to a former Penthouse pet. In 2009, she cited the case in a profile of powerful attorneys as her most significant achievement.

The source said he’s not surprised Silver chose Plevan.

“She very prominent and very pricey,” the source said.

The News recently reported state taxpayers will foot Silver’s legal bills and whatever judgment or settlement that might stem from the case. A Silver aide couldn’t immediately say how much Plevan would be paid per hour.

It’s possible that Plevan could charge up to $900 per hour, but they say perhaps she’ll offer Silver a discount. The legal fees will be in addition to the more than $100,000 settlement Silver approved as hush money. We the taxpayers paid for that, too. Oddly enough, I’ve heard very little about this on the local news, and New York Republicans haven’t had much to say about it, either.