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Jul 15, 2009 9:02 PMPublication: The East Hampton Press

Embattled town official puts house on the market

Jul 15, 2009 9:02 PM

While East Hampton Town Supervisor Bill McGintee has hired the powerhouse law firm of Bracewell & Giuliani to defend himself in an investigation into the town’s finances by Suffolk County District Attorney Thomas Spota’s office, the town’s former budget director, who was arraigned on nine criminal charges last month and has legal bills of his own, has put his house on the market.

Ted Hults, who appeared in Town Justice Court on June 11 with a legal aid attorney, is due back in court on July 30. His legal aid attorney, Robert Coyle, did not return calls for comment on whether he is still representing Mr. Hults, and Town Hall insiders said this week that they were unsure whether Mr. Hults had enough money to hire a private attorney to represent him.

Mr. Hults pleaded guilty to two misdemeanor counts of official misconduct and was allowed to postpone entering pleas on seven felony charges related to misleading bond documents and improper transfers from the town’s Community Preservation Fund. At the June 11 arraignment, Town Justice Lisa Rana told Mr. Hults that he could wait to enter a plea until he had hired a lawyer.

A source familiar with the case noted Tuesday: “The longer Hults goes without a lawyer, the more prone he is to his rights being abused by the DA’s office.”

The East Hampton office of Devlin McNiff Real Estate obtained the listing for Mr. Hults’s house on July 7. The 1,200-square-foot, two-bedroom house on School Street in Springs is listed for $445,000 and, according to the real estate company’s website, “is priced to sell as soon as possible. It is in need of updating but sits on a beautiful 1/2 acre plus, overlooking a pond in the midst of 15 acres of nature preserve.”

Mr. Spota said on June 11 that his office is continuing to investigate Mr. McGintee, and many legal professionals at the time speculated that Mr. Hults had not entered a plea on the felony charges because he was expected to testify against Mr. McGintee in exchange for clemency from the DA’s office. A pair of sworn confessions Mr. Hults submitted state that he and Mr. McGintee both were aware that they could not legally transfer money from the CPF fund, and that both men were aware of the faulty information in the bond prospectuses.

The district attorney has not yet released any information on whether Mr. McGintee will be charged. Mr. McGintee’s attorney, Marc Mukasey, had no comment when contacted Tuesday.

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Can we borrow a little CPF money to buy it?
By we could run this town! (129), wonderful Wainscott on Jul 15, 09 4:06 PM
1 member liked this comment
Blue Sky, you just shouldn't bother! His father was a Town Justice; he never worked for the school. You really should do some fact-checking. Besides, hew as well-respected and not a bumb, like YOU. You are horrible.
By Amahalo (20), East Hampton on Jul 20, 09 3:29 PM
Come on guys, a little compassion. Ted is deeply cared for in this community.
By MaryB (19), East Hampton on Jul 20, 09 11:32 PM
Ted is the best! He is being hung out to dry. Ted is an honorable man who doesn't deserve any of this. He never stole, he did what he thought was best for the town. He's lived here his entire life and everyone who knows Ted needs no further explanation. Good luck next week Ted. My thoughts and prayers are with you and let's hope justice does prevail and you are set free.

By Amahalo (20), East Hampton on Jul 23, 09 3:32 PM