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Koch’s Chef Quits Over Catering Stew

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Mayor Edward I. Koch’s chef, who was accused of using his city connections to help his private catering business, quit Thursday after seven years on the job.

“While I regret his decision, I understand it,” Koch said of the move by Mitchell London, his live-in chef at Gracie Mansion since 1981. “He’s a talented chef and I wish him the best of luck in his future endeavors.” The resignation is effective Nov. 3.

London, who made $51,450 a year and received free room and board, was accused of using city cars, workers, food and utensils for his catering business, in which he is a partner with David Margolis, a friend of the mayor’s and the chairman of Colt Industries.

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A week ago, Koch ordered London to give up his private catering business if he wanted to keep cooking at Gracie Mansion.

Koch took the action after a city Department of Investigation report concluded that London broke the law when he mixed his catering business with his city job.

Manhattan Dist. Atty. Robert Morgenthau declined to prosecute, saying there was insufficient evidence.

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