NEW YORK (AP) — A key witness is taking the stand in the corruption trial of a former top aide to Gov. Andrew Cuomo.

Todd Howe is expected to testify at the Manhattan federal court trial of Joseph Percoco on Monday.

Prosecutors say Percoco accepted more than $300,000 in bribes from three businessmen. Percoco's lawyers say any money paid to Percoco was not a bribe.

Howe, a longtime lobbyist, pleaded guilty to corruption charges in 2016 in a cooperation deal that required him to testify against Percoco.

Defense attorney Barry Bohrer labeled Howe a liar in his opening statement. Bohrer said Howe has a "below zero interest in the truth."

Percoco was a close confidant to Cuomo for many years but the governor is not expected to be a witness at the trial.