The tale that the psychiatrist tells in his recent countersuit against Hudson County government is one he has told many times to many people about why, one day in May of 1999, he walked into FBI headquarters and told them that he had been giving bribes to then-Hudson County Executive Robert Janiszewski.
During an interview later, Sandoval talked openly about the increasing level of extortion that drove him into the arms of the FBI, since he claimed that he had nowhere else to go.
Although Janiszewski would later plead guilty to extortion, Sandoval said the blame was not exclusive to Janiszewski. In private conversations, he often spilled the names of those he felt were to blame, and his lawsuit was the first time he put them down in public documents.
He has now laid out a pattern of corruption that he claims infected the entire administration.
His lawsuit names some of the most central power brokers of Janiszewski's time, some of whom still wield power. He claims they were part of a criminal family of which Janiszewski was head.
Sandoval has always claimed that the corruption went far beyond those crimes for which Janiszewski admitted guilt, and for the first time, the names - covering some of the highest ranking officials in Hudson County politics - have been put into public documents.
The document alleges that there were several failed schemes orchestrated by the Janiszewski administration to defraud Medicaid through county institutions. Sandoval says that he gave the information to the Hudson County Freeholders in 1997 but then was threatened to keep quiet by Janiszewski operatives or face financial ruin - actions that eventually drove him to the FBI.
Did the county suit have political overtones?
This bombshell was dropped into the middle of an election season in which U.S. Sen. Robert Menendez is running to retain the seat so generously bestowed upon him by Gov. Jon Corzine.
It was dropped because two months ago, Hudson County Executive Tom DeGise announced that the county had filed suit to collect any money illicitly gained by Janiszewski and the actions of his associates.
Whether or not the county suit is intended to seek reimbursement from all of those named in Sandoval's counters is unclear, since the county suit named only the handful Janiszewski accused in court - most of whom later pleaded guilty.
But the political impact may have larger implications since DeGise may be acting to preserve his position against a move to unseat him next year. Several people claimed they have Menendez' support to run for county executive next year against DeGise. One person named as a possible candidate is Assemblyman Louis Manzo.
The suit provides Republican Tom Kean Jr. - who is challenging Menendez for U.S. Senate in the June Democratic primary - with a lot of ammunition.
If Menendez loses, much of this political threat to unseat DeGise vanishes.
Nothing in Janiszewski's pockets - or up his sleeves?
The county suit, of course, was full of illusions - such as any chance that more money might be recovered.
Although Janiszewski left office with two ski lodges as well as control of thousands of dollars in campaign contributions, none will likely be accessible to a county suit. As with the campaign funds which he transferred to his wife's name, his true wealth may be difficult to find.
The fact that he is acting as his own attorney in defending himself against the county's suit testifies to the fact that he isn't about to admit he has wealth.
Perhaps Hudson County should look for a filing cabinet somewhere. Janiszewski testified in 2003 that he had put thousands of dollars of cash bribes into a filing cabinet at home, unnoticed there for months, even years.
A wise move might look at divorce proceedings to see if Janiszewski's wife has used a common trick for protecting cash.
Sandoval, of course, is also pleading poverty, but since the county - under Janiszewski - did as much as possible to milk him for funds, his poverty may be more legitimate.
Will Sires finish his race for House of Representatives?
In this mix is the question as to whether Assemblyman and West New York Mayor Albio Sires will actually continue his run to take the seat in the House of Representatives vacated by Menendez's ascension to the U.S. Senate.
Perth Amboy Mayor Joseph Vas, who is seeking the Democratic nomination over Sires, has been pushing hard to take advantage of every opportunity. Although most agree that Sires will likely take the nomination if he sees it to the primary, some question whether he will drop out.
Conaghan could win Bayonne mayor's race
The Bayonne race has heated up in an unexpected way with the entrance of retired Municipal Judge Patrick Conaghan, who replaces Vincent Militello as the chief challenger to incumbent Mayor Joseph Doria.
As Militello fades from the scene, Doria may face a more serious challenge, since Conaghan has significant name recognition, an army of campaign workers, as well as an alternative plan for developing the former Military Ocean Terminal. Conaghan does not want to see a massive residential development there. He appeals to the nostalgic voter, who would like things to go back to where they were before industry fled the city.
Among his campaign promises, Conaghan claims his plan will bring back jobs lost and give a boost to the blue-collar population of the city, as opposed to the largely white-collar population Doria's plan for redevelopment assures the city.
Leonard Kantor fills out the fourth in the field of mayoral candidates. Most people expect to see a runoff.
The race for City Council is even more complicated with 15 candidates vying for two at-large seats and three council seats.
O'Dea and Fitzgibbons almost fight
Jersey City Freeholder Bill O'Dea and Hoboken Freeholder Maurice Fitzgibbons came near to having a fistfight after a freeholder meeting on March 23. People who witnessed the exchange took bets as to whether O'Dea could actually take Fitzgibbons in a fair fight.
"O'Dea never won a fight in his life," said one witness. "And here he is facing off against possibly the weakest member on the board. Most of us bet he couldn't do it." Cooler heads prevailed before a blow was struck. So all bets were off.