Autopsy: NJ corruption figure died of overdose

AP News
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Posted: Jan 05, 2010 6:29 PM

Autopsy results for a New Jersey political consultant who died shortly after his arrest in the state's largest ever corruption sweep showed he overdosed on Valium.

Hudson County Prosecutor Edward DeFazio said the medical examiner was unable to conclude whether Jack Shaw's overdose was intentional or accidental.

An autopsy report released Tuesday lists the manner of death as undetermined and found several prescription drugs in Shaw's system. DeFazio said the medical examiner determined that Valium was at toxic levels.

"The bottom line is a final manner of death cannot be determined within a reasonable degree of medical certainty," DeFazio said.

The 61-year-old Shaw had a host of medical problems.

Shaw was among 44 people arrested July 23 in a two-track investigation into money laundering and political corruption. Federal prosecutors accused him of taking $10,000 in bribes for himself from a government informant and proposing that the cooperating witness make a $10,000 campaign contribution to an unnamed Jersey City official.

Shaw was found dead July 28 in his Jersey City apartment.