Top aide to New York Governor Andrew Cuomo resigns amid scandal

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A senior aide to New York state’s Governor Andrew Cuomo has resigned amid a sexual harassment scandal involving the politician.

Melissa DeRosa, secretary to the governor, announced her resignation on Sunday after she was accused of an attempted coverup and retaliating against one of Mr Cuomo’s accusers.

Her name was mentioned 187 times in the 168-page report, which claimed Mr Cuomo had sexually harassed 11 women.

Although Mr Cuomo has denied any wrongdoing and vowed to stay in office he could soon face impeachment. President Joe Biden has called for him to resign.

In her statement, DeRosa said: “Personally, the past 2 years have been emotionally and mentally trying. I am forever grateful for the opportunity to have worked with such talented colleagues on behalf of our state.”

The report found that Cuomo groped, kissed or made suggestive comments to 11 women in violation of the law.

This prompted local prosecutors to launch a criminal investigation, where they spent five months speaking to nearly 200 people, including staff members and some of those who made complaints against him.

Many of the women said they feared retaliation if they reported Cuomo’s behaviour, investigators said, describing his administration as a hostile workplace “rife with fear and intimidation”.

On one occasion, the probe found, Cuomo’s staff took action “intended to discredit and disparage” an accuser, Lindsey Boylan, the first former employee to publicly accuse him of wrongdoing, including leaking confidential personnel files and drafting a letter attacking her credibility

The New York State Assembly’s Judiciary Committee has now scheduled a meeting to address impeachment proceedings on Monday.