Mount Vernon mayor files lawsuit against NY AG's office

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MOUNT VERNON -

Mount Vernon Mayor Richard Thomas is looking to put a stop to the state attorney general's investigation into him.

Thomas claims former state Attorney General Eric Schneiderman conducted an illegal investigation.

Thomas has filed a suit demanding the attorney general's office halt its investigation of him. He insists the office has no legal authority to investigate or prosecute him for the election or inaugural committee activities that are the focus of the probe.

Thomas also argues that since acting Attorney General Barbara Underwood was not appointed by the Legislature, she has no authority to bring an indictment against him.

Schneiderman charged Thomas with grand larceny and public corruption back in March. He is accused of using money from his campaign accounts to pay rent, make car payments and buy a $2,000 Chanel handbag.

Last week, Schneiderman abruptly resigned amid claims he physically abused women he dated.

Thomas is asking the court to issue an emergency injunction to stop the investigation against him, calling it "an abuse of power."

A spokeswoman for the attorney general's office tells News 12 that they are well within their legal right to pursue the charges. "We look forward to proving our case against the mayor in court, and we will not be distracted," she said.

Thomas is due in court June 1.

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