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Sunday, April 24, 2011

Federal Appeals Court Reinstates RICO Against Former Federal Prosecutor

RICO Reinstated Against NJ Lawyer Paul Bergrin
The Associated Press  -  April 19, 2011

A federal appeals court has reinstated racketeering charges against criminal defense lawyer Paul Bergrin. He was indicted in May 2009 for his alleged role in the murder of a witness against one of his clients and attempting to hire a hit man to whack a witness against another client. Last April, a federal judge in Newark threw out racketeering charges against Bergrin, ruling the alleged crimes were a series of disconnected acts and not part of a pattern of racketeering. Bergrin, a former federal prosecutor, was convicted in May 2009 in another case involving a Manhattan brothel where he was accused of taking over an escort service after the 2005 arrest of its founder – one of his law clients. The Manhattan District Attorney had accused Bergrin of using the whore house "to offer sexual favors to unnamed New Jersey law enforcement officers and jail guards – people who were in a position to keep him informed about what inmates might be planning to cooperate against his clients" Last November Michael Catapano, the nephew of reputed Colombo underboss John "Sonny" Franzese, got 6 1/2 years in prison on an extortion conviction, and in sentencing him Brooklyn federal judge Brian Cogan also found that the gangster had participated in a plot to influence a witness suspected of cooperating against mobbed-up lawyer Paul Bergrin in a prostitution and money laundering case.


Newark Lawyer Arrested, Charged With Racketeering Conspiracy, Including Murder of a Federal Witness
PRNEWSWIRE -  May 20, 2011

Three Others Also Arrested and Charged

NEWARK, N.J.  -- Defense attorney Paul Bergrin was arrested today with three other individuals on an indictment charging him with being the leader of a racketeering conspiracy that included murder of a witness in a drug case, the attempted hiring of a hitman in another drug case, wire fraud and money laundering, Acting U.S. Attorney Ralph J. Marra, Jr., announced. The 14-count indictment accuses Bergrin of using various legal entities, including the Law Office of Paul W. Bergrin, P.C., to conduct illegal activities, including murder, to protect criminal clients, perpetuate their activities and shield them from prosecution. The indictment specifically details Bergrin's role in the murder of a confidential witness in an Essex County federal drug case, and his efforts to hire a hitman from Chicago to kill at least one witness in a Monmouth County drug case being prosecuted by the county. (That murder never transpired; the "hitman" was a cooperating witness.) The indictment was returned yesterday and unsealed with the arrests of Bergrin and three co-defendants early this morning. A fifth defendant is incarcerated in the Monmouth County Jail awaiting trial on state drug charges. Bergrin and the others arrested today all appeared before a federal magistrate later in the day. At the government's request, Bergrin was ordered detained, pending a further hearing next Tuesday. The government is seeking detention pending trial for Bergrin, on the grounds that he represents an ongoing danger to the community and a flight risk. The government filed a detailed certification in court in support of that motion. Bergrin, 53, of Nutley -- a former Essex County Assistant Prosecutor and Assistant U.S. Attorney between 1985 and 1990 -- is named in each count of the indictment. He is charged with racketeering and racketeering conspiracy, wire fraud and wire fraud conspiracy, murder of a federal witness, and conspiracy to murder a federal witness and, separately, witnesses in a state case, as well as Travel Act violations and conspiracy to commit Travel Act violations. The charges related to the murder of a witness carry a mandatory minimum sentence of life in prison. The racketeering charges each carry a maximum penalty of life in prison. Also arrested today and charged in the indictment are: Thomas Moran, 42, of Paramus, an attorney with an office in Bergrin's law offices, charged with conspiracy to travel in aid of a racketeering enterprise, and two counts of travel in aid of a racketeering enterprise -- all connected to the efforts to hire the Chicago hitman to kill witnesses in the Monmouth County drug case. (Also ordered detained by the magistrate.) Vincente Estevez, 36, of Manalapan, currently in custody facing state drug trafficking charges in Monmouth County, charged in the indictment with conspiracy to travel in aid of a racketeering enterprise -- the alleged drug dealer who sought to benefit from the murder of witnesses against him in the Monmouth County drug case. Yolanda Jauregui, a/k/a "Yolanda Bracero," 37, of Nutley (same address as Bergrin), charged in the indictment with wire fraud conspiracy and wire fraud, in connection with a mortgage fraud scheme with Bergrin (released on a $200,000 secured bond). Sundiata Koontz, 37, of West Orange, charged in the indictment with wire fraud conspiracy and five counts of wire fraud, in connection with the mortgage fraud scheme with Bergrin (released on a $200,000 secured bond).

"The conduct alleged is simply shocking," Marra said. "A licensed lawyer, a former prosecutor essentially became one of the criminals he represents, supporting, encouraging, indeed directing a criminal enterprise that engaged in murder and murder conspiracies, drug trafficking and financial fraud. Bergrin can now expect to feel the full weight of the very legal system he turned on its head with his conduct." "It is unconscionable that an attorney, who should be a staunch guardian of our legal system, betrays that trust and responsibility by utilizing his practice as a criminal enterprise," said Gerard P. McAleer, Special Agent in Charge of the Drug Enforcement Administration in New Jersey. "The allegations in this indictment make Bergrin no different than a street gangster." "The crimes alleged in this indictment are especially egregious because Bergrin is a man who once took an oath to uphold, protect and defend the constitution and enforce the law as a federal and state prosecutor," said Weysan Dun, FBI Special Agent in Charge in Newark. "As a defense attorney, Bergrin is still an officer of the court. For a person in such a position to not only commit crimes, but also seek to undermine our system of justice system is a total betrayal of values." According to the indictment and certification filed in court today, in November 2003, Bergrin received the name of a confidential federal informant, who went by the name Kemo, from a client, William Baskerville, and passed along the name to Baskerville's drug trafficking associates. (Baskerville had just been arrested and was in jail on federal drug charges that carried a potential life prison term.) Bergrin allegedly told the drug traffickers at this meeting that if the informant were killed, Bergrin could get Baskerville out of jail and derail the federal prosecution. As he was leaving the meeting, Bergrin instructed the drug traffickers to remember what he had just told them -- "No Kemo, no case." On March 3, 2004, Anthony Young, one of the attendees of Bergrin's meeting, shot the informant three times in the back of the head while the informant attempted to cross the intersection of South Orange Avenue and 19th Street in Newark, N.J. A federal jury convicted Baskerville in 2007 of conspiracy to murder a federal witness and drug trafficking and was sentenced to life in prison. Young pleaded guilty before the trial, testified against Baskerville, and was sentenced to 30 years in prison.

The Chicago Hitman/MonmouthCountyDrug Case

On May 29, 2008, Estevez was charged by the Monmouth County Prosecutor's Office with a number of drug trafficking offenses and was being represented by Bergrin. According to the indictment, from at least as early as June 2008 through December 2008, Estevez, Bergrin and Moran schemed to locate and kill a number of witnesses that they believed intended to cooperate with the prosecution and testify against Estevez. As in the Baskerville case, the intention, according to the indictment, was to thwart the prosecution, get Estevez out of jail, and allow him to resume his drug trafficking business. In particular, according to the indictment, Bergrin, Estevez and Moran singled out someone known as "Junior the Panamanian," whom they believed was cooperating with authorities. Estevez and Bergrin also identified for the hitman two others Estevez wanted killed to prevent their testimony in the Monmouth County case. On Aug. 5, 2008, Bergrin traveled to Chicago, met with the hitman and identified "Junior the Panamanian" as the "f__king rat" he wanted murdered, according to the indictment. Other meetings in person followed between Bergrin and the hitman. Moran allegedly arranged for Estevez to get a cell phone in jail so he could (and did) communicate directly with the hitman. Moran agreed to obtain a gun for the hitman so that the hitman could kill "Junior the Panamanian." The hitman made numerous recordings of his meetings and conversations with Bergrin and Moran, according to the government's certification. In one of those conversations, on Dec. 8, 2008, Bergrin, the cooperating witness, Moran and Bracero were present, and Bergrin and the cooperating witness discussed that "Junior the Panamanian" had been located. According to the government's certification about the planned murder, the hitman asked Bergrin, "Is it going to help our case or hurt it?" To which Bergrin replied: "It's going to help it. I got it all figured out ... Put on a ski mask and make it look like a robbery and take all the money in the house ... It cannot under any circumstances look like a hit."

The Mortgage Fraud

As set forth in the indictment, Bergrin and his co-conspirators also agreed to and ultimately obtained fraudulent mortgages on properties located in Essex County. The scheme involved providing lending institutions with information that falsely inflated the value of the properties to be mortgaged and falsely portrayed the buyers' credit worthiness. The mortgage fraud scheme caused mortgages worth more than $1.1 million to be issued. Substantially, all of those mortgages went into default. The racketeering charges each carry a maximum penalty of life in prison and a fine of $250,000. The charges related to travel in aid of a racketeering enterprise carry a maximum penalty of 20 years in prison and a fine of $250,000. The charges related to wire fraud carry a maximum penalty of 30 years in prison and a fine of $1 million. Despite the indictment, all the defendants are presumed innocent unless proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt. Marra credited the FBI's Red Bank Resident Agency, under the direction of Special Agent in Charge Weysan Dun, Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) Special Agents under the direction of Special Agent in Charge Gerald P. McAleer, and Special Agents of the IRS Criminal Investigation, under the direction of Special Agent in Charge William P. Offord. Marra also thanked the Monmouth County Prosecutor's Office, under the direction of Prosecutor Luis A. Valentin, for its assistance in the case. The case is being handled by Assistant United States Attorneys John Gay and Joseph N. Minish.



nj resident said...

Wow. How did this obviously dangerous nut job get to be a lawyer and then a prosecutor? Clearly, he's been a criminal for a long, long time. Who watches these guys? There had to be many sings that he was just a mobster with a law degree.

Anonymous said...

What about adding the Federal Judge who dismissed the RICO as a co-conspirator to to the RICO complaint?

Anonymous said...

I hope this Easter Sunday Judge John K. McGuirk from the Supreme Court in Goshen New York County of Orange, chokes on an easter egg.

Judge John K. McGuirk is a pig who helped with the kidnapping of my children for money to enable the exclusive and private sexual exploitation and trafficking of my children through child porn and prostitution.

I hope you get rape and sodomized in the same manner my child has been raped and sodomized because of your criminal activities after you sold him to the abuser.

I wonder if Judge John K. McGuirk only supports familial pedophilia, child porn, and child prostitution in child custody cases he gets paid to rig from the Orange County Whore House in Goshen New York, or if he is also a pedophile client.

The FEDS should take these allegations seriously cause there is plenty of evidence. Come on FEDS go raid McGuirk's Whore House and his computers including the ones in his chamber...

Anonymous said...

Inside City Hall:

Proskauer Rose hires "ultra inside" Lobbyist for Client Spherion in middle of nearly Billion Dollar Embezzlement investigation in NYC.

According to the NY Post story, part of the purpose of hiring the Lobbyist is to "facilitate communications" with the Government for Proskauer's Client, Spherion.

The Lobbyist is former Special Staffer to Governor Mario Cuomo who married a former Chief of Staff to Rudy Guliani.

Anonymous said...

oops, guess this just an 80 Million heist at play here.

The company hired the two computer consultants whom prosecutors charged with pulling off one of the biggest heists ever by embezzling $80 million of the $722 million in spending to build a new timekeeping system

Read more:

Anonymous said...

Is the Onion finally peeling on the First Dept, Iviewit and more?

This is the Company that Proskauer Rose's Clients at Spherion were overseeing:

SAIC (Science Applications International Corporation) NYSE: SAI is a FORTUNE 500 scientific, engineering and technology applications company headquartered in the United States with numerous federal, state, and private sector clients. It works extensively with the United States Department of Defense, the United States Department of Homeland Security, and the United States Intelligence Community, including the National Security Agency, as well as other U.S. Government civil agencies and selected commercial markets.

This is more on what SAIC actually does:

This is who Proskauer Rose hired on behalf of Spherion in the middle of the Embezzlement Investigation for "overseeing" SAIC:

One of the most influential political lobbyists and operators in town, Suri Kasirer runs the firm Kasirer Consulting.

The daughter of an orthodox rabbi and a Queens native, Kasirer served as special assistant for Jewish affairs to Governor Mario Cuomo in the early 1990s and set up her boutique lobbying agency, Kasirer Consulting, in 1995. She's since become a staple of the lunch scene at City Hall Restaurant, an establishment where lobbyists and political insiders jump out of their seats to slap one another on the back with such vigor that a regular diner once recommended keeping a chiropractor on staff.

Her five-person agency represented the Miki Naftali-led Elad Properties after the company's bid to turn the Plaza Hotel into a condo turned into a political hot button; she's also lobbied on behalf of developers Gary Barnett, Shaya Boymelgreen, Stephen Green, and Kent Swig. Other clients have included NBC Universal, Keyspan, the Motion Picture Association of America, and the American Cancer Society. With $3 million in fees in 2006, Kasirer Consulting is now the most active lobbying firm in the city. Kasirer is also a very prominent Democratic fundraiser: She's helped rake in cash for Carolyn Maloney, Melinda Katz, Eliot Spitzer, Bill Thompson, and Hillary Clinton.

Suri's a nickname. Her full name is Sarah Kasirer.

Kasirer's husband is Bruce Teitelbaum, who served as chief of staff for former Mayor Rudy Giuliani. (Kasirer sparked a bit of drama when she acknowledged that she'd lobbied her husband's colleagues and was temporarily banned from lobbying at City Hall—the institution, not the restaurant—as a result.) The couple has a daughter named Sophia and lives on West 78th Street, in a condo they purchased for $3.25 million in 2007. They also own a home in Southampton.

Anonymous said...

They have dates, times, telephone conversations.......see they are tracking and have been for years, just depends if they want to take you down or not!

Anonymous said...

They have dates, times, telephone conversations.......see they are tracking and have been for years, just depends if they want to take you down or not!

Anonymous said...

S.A.I.C. DID 9/11

Anonymous said...

DEA Agents Accused in Court Pleadings of Dealing Heroin As Part of 1990s Pakistan Connection

David S. Katz of Global Security Group is a common thug, thief, con-artist, drug trafficker, child pornographer, and child sex trafficker. This is common knowledge in the Drug Enforcement Agency as well as in the New York State Division on Security Guard/Private Investigator Licensing Division.

The only reason he is not either jailed or has lost his private security license as of yet is because he is blackmailing and extorting various high ranking members of the Division of Licensing and the DEA. With his Israeli Mossad connections he has threatened to kill anyone who tries to interfere with his private career, even thugh he was pretty much forced out of the DEA and FBI for being a dirty, dishonest, horrible employee who took advantage of his job and his position to both buy and sell drugs, children, and weapons while he was working as a Federal Agent.

But no matter - he is a Jew - and as we all know, Jews always get away with murder (especially in New York City). This son of a bitch is a disgrace to mankind, and his profession.

Hopefully he will be losing his license very soon - there is no question this vermin is on the way down already.

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See Video of Senator John L. Sampson's 1st Hearing on Court 'Ethics' Corruption

The first hearing, held in Albany on June 8, 2009 hearing is on two videos:

               Video of 1st Hearing on Court 'Ethics' Corruption
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