Tuesday, March 29, 2011


State Senator in Graft Case Won City Privileges for Housemates

Sunday, March 27, 2011


Behind Troubled City Payroll Project, Lax Oversight and One Powerful Insider

Sunday, March 20, 2011


Dirty little secrets: City Council members have skirted laws, bent rules and abused their power

Sunday, March 20th 2011, 4:00 AM
More than a dozen City Council members have skirted laws, bent rules or used their positions to benefit themselves, a Daily News probe has found.
A three-month investigation found Council members who dodged taxes, violated the city's housing and building code, circumvented regulations to get cheap housing and, in one case, even ignored criminal bench warrants.
As part of the probe, The News reviewed thousands of pages of records regarding judgments, liens, tax history, property ownership, building and housing code violations, campaign finance and financial disclosure.
And while the Council's 51 members - one of whom is under indictment - routinely make laws on everything from smoking in public to recycling trash, The News found many have a history of ignoring the letter of the law.
Confronted by the News, several Council members admitted they'd made mistakes in judgment and promised to rectify them.
"There is no excuse," said one.
"To me, my integrity means a lot," said another.
Among the findings, to be detailed in The News over three days:


Queens city councilman Ruben Wills acknowledges outstanding arrest warrants

Sunday, March 20th 2011, 4:00 AM
City councilman Ruben Wills boasts an impressive do-gooder resume: founding a basketball league for neighborhood youth, running a nonprofit group to help single mothers.
What he doesn't mention is that he has two outstanding arrest warrants for pending criminal cases, a Daily News investigation has found.
Or that he's a deadbeat dad who faces a civil warrant for nonpayment of child support. State tax officials said as of Feb.7, he owed $27,493.
Saturday, Wills admitted he was aware of the two outstanding criminal bench warrants on cases in Manhattan and Long Island that date back several years, and apologized for not addressing them before being elected to serve his district.
"There is no excuse," he wrote in an email response to the News. "While these events are more than 10 years old, I take full responsibility and I have taken steps to remedy the situation."
Last fall, Wills, 39, beat out a crowded field to win the office held by the late Thomas White, which represents a large working-class swath of Jamaica, Queens.
On his Council website biography, he says he became an "entrepreneur" at 21, starting "a home contracting business which became a center of opportunity for young adults, the formerly incarcerated, and other at-risk residents of the community to acquire the job skills necessary to escape the vicious cycle of poverty and prison."

Rushing to the rescue when the mayor failed to convene a commission on politicians' pay

Sunday, March 20th 2011, 4:00 AM
It just so happened that the Daily News was digging into unsavory doings on the City Council just as Mayor Bloomberg was supposed to be reviewing whether to support raises for the city's elected officials.
The first installment of The News' investigative report appears in today's paper with the revelation that, with remarkable brass and ingenuity, more than a dozen Council members have enjoyed both writing laws and skirting them.
Today the special focus is on Councilman Ruben Wills. Elected last fall to represent southeast Queens, Wills is the subject of two misdemeanor bench warrants and listed by state tax authorities as a $27,493 deadbeat dad.
More shmutz, and perhaps handcuffs, to come.

You wanted more scandals and "GATES" you got it.
Before there was the "Oracle at Delphi" there was Count Vampire J. Machiavelli
VJ Machiavelli


'Fraudster' dines on Mike dime

Last Updated: 8:04 AM, March 19, 2011
Posted: 12:12 AM, March 19, 2011

Before one of his trusted political aides was accused of being a crook, Mayor Bloomberg gave him $120,000 to open his own political committee -- which he's now using to dine out at the mayor's expense while under indictment.

Filings at the state Board of Elections show that political operative John Haggerty Jr. tapped funds from the 28th Assembly District Republican Committee to chow down 13 times between last Nov. 23 and Jan. 10.

The meals weren't lavish. Together, the bills came to $636.97.
A couple of weeks after narrowly being re-elected to a third term in 2009, the mayor donated $120,000 to a political committee Haggerty set up out of his home in Forest Hills, Queens.


Bloomy's 'swindler' slammed

New York Post - Laura Italiano - 4 days ago
Accused campaign-cash crook John Haggerty failed yesterday to convince a judge to toss his charges, instead earning a judicial scolding ...

Bamboozled: Politico allegedly conned NYC Mayor Michael Bloomberg ...

San Francisco Examiner - 4 days ago
WHAT: Political operative John Haggerty now faces a trial for allegedly bilking New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg out of $1.1 million. ...

Just keep on following the money from dinning to ?

Before there was the "Oracle at Delphi" there was Count Vampire J. Machiavelli

VJ Machiavelli


The AG shows sense 

New York Post - ‎EDITORIAL

Is Attorney General Eric Schneiderman taking tips from The Post? Sure seems like it — and kudos to him.

The AG has issued subpoenas to two dubious Queens nonprofits — both tied to state Sen. Shirley Huntley — that were the subject of recent stories in the Sunday Post.

Neither group managed to give a clear accounting of its spending.
Huntley founded one group, The Parent Workshop — meant, ostensibly, to help parents navigate school bureaucracy — just months before she was first elected in 2006. Its ex-president now has an $85,000 job as her “confidential assistant.”

Once in office, as The Post reported, Huntley promptly snared a legislative “member item” to funnel $30,000 to the group, which went to two consultants — one of whom resided in a Huntley home.

Watchdogs in the Senate fortunately managed to red-flag another $125,000 before any of that cash made it out the door.

The AG also subpoenaed a similar nonprofit, the Parent Information Network. That one’s run by Huntley’s daughter Pamela Corley (natch!) and got more than $400,000 in state funds between 1996 and 2008 — thanks notably to Huntley and her pal, Assemblywoman Vivian Cook.


NY state senator's charity ties being investigated 

Wall Street Journal - ‎Mar 17, 2011‎
Shirley Huntley, a Queens Democrat and former community school board president, said Thursday she won't talk publicly about the investigation yet. She was first elected to the Senate in 2006 and is a member of the Senate Education Committee. ...

NY state senator's charity ties being investigated 

WCAX - ‎Mar 17, 2011‎
Shirley Huntley, a Queens Democrat and former school board president, says she won't talk publicly about the investigation yet. State Education Department records show $401500 paid from 1996 to 2008 to Parent Information Network in Queens to advise ...

AG subpoenas ed groups linked to Queens Sen. Shirley Huntley that got big... 

New York Daily News - Kenneth Lovett - ‎Mar 16, 2011‎
One subpoena seeking the nonprofit's paperwork went to Huntley's daughter, Pamela Corley, who heads the Parent Information Network, said a source familiar with the probe. A second went to Vanessa Sparks, president of the Parent ...
Before there was the "Oracle at Delphi" there was Count Vampire J. Machiavelli
VJ Machiavelli


A Senator’s Shadow Family

NY Times

EVEN in a city that celebrates unbridled ostentation, the sprawling estate at 139 Bassett Avenue in the seaside enclave of Mill Basin, Brooklyn, seems to redefine conspicuous consumption.

The front yard is a gaudy stab at Versailles, with four-foot obelisks at each corner of the driveway, intricately tiled fountains and a series of steel sculptures that depict dolphins mid-dive, children at play and birds in flight. The 7,000-square-foot home, whose aesthetic is cruise-ship-meets-mob-mansion, has five terraces, a curved-glass elevator and an arcade room outfitted with gumball machines. On the second floor, there is what the residents call their “ice cream room,” furnished with an old-fashioned counter and soda fountain.
Creating this eclectic palace was a huge mess. There were bitter legal disputes with contractors. Neighbors filed numerous complaints with the city’s Buildings Departmentquestioning whether there were proper permits. At one point, a police officer moonlighting as a steeplejack fell and injured his spine when the flagpole he had been hired to fix cracked.  The house is owned by two never-married middle-aged brothers, Drs. Michael S. and Gerard I. Turano, gynecologists whose 39-foot yacht, Special Delivery, is often docked out back. They live there with their mother, Dorothy, 73, a Brooklyn native who manages the local community board.
But the person who oversaw the construction — and browbeat the contractors — is State Senator Carl Kruger, an Albany power broker and Democratic moneyman whose official residence is at his sister’s, two miles away.
The tangled ties among Mr. Kruger, the doctors and their mother — long a topic of gossip and speculation in the insular neighborhood and nearby political precincts — were thrust into view this month when the senator and the older Turano brother were among eight men charged in what the United States attorney for the Southern District of New York described as “a broad-based bribery racket.”
For more than 25 years, Mr. Kruger and the Turanos of Mill Basin have forged the most unconventional of domestic arrangements — at once public and opaque, widely whispered about and poorly understood.
The Turanos are variously described by friends, neighbors and colleagues as the senator’s social acquaintances, lovers or surrogate relatives.  
In 2002, Michael Turano testified that Mr. Kruger was his “best friend.” Benjamin Brafman, Mr. Kruger’s lawyer, says the senator “often describes the Turanos as his family,” though in depositions Mr. Kruger has understated how long he has known them and how frequently he visited their home.
(A process server testified that he saw Mr. Kruger at the Bassett Avenue home, on several occasions, “in his pajamas coming out of a bedroom.”)
Investigators, who tapped the senator’s cellphone for months, have both muddied and clarified the situation, suggesting that Mr. Kruger, 61, had his most intimate relationship with Michael, 49, picking him up at the office and fielding phone calls from him throughout the day. “Kruger spoke with Michael Turano,” court records say, “in a manner that revealed that they relied on and supported one another.”
But when asked whether Mr. Kruger was a close friend of her son, Ms. Turano, through the security intercom at her front door, said: “He was my friend. That’s why I don’t understand about this. Whatever comes out is going to be so wrong.”
In the days since the criminal complaint was filed on March 10, the four central characters in this drama have declined to talk extensively to reporters. But interviews with two dozen people who know them, along with previously undisclosed court and city records, reveal a strange symbiosis. Mr. Kruger vaulted the Turanos into his spheres of power and influence, prosecutors say, landing Dorothy a plum job and, later, funneling hundreds of thousands of dollars into her sons’ bank accounts to finance a $200,000 Bentley and pay down a $1.2 million mortgage.




Wednesday, March 16, 2011


Judge: Evidence aplenty vs. NY political operative

Wall Street Journal - 
AP NEW YORK — There is "overwhelming" evidence against a political operative charged with bilking New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg out of more than $1 million, and the billionaire mayor's wealth and stature don't make the case a victimless crime, ...

Operative charged with fleecing $1M-plus from NYC mayor may hear Tuesday on ...

Los Angeles Times - 
By AP NEW YORK (AP) — A political operative charged with bilking New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg out of more than $1 million may be set to get an answer on his bid to have the case thrown out. John Haggerty has a court date Tuesday in Manhattan. ...

Ross Mantle/The Wall Street Journal

Wall Street Journal (blog) - Michael Howard Saul - 
John Haggerty was arraigned in June 2010 on charges that he stole $1.1 million from Mayor Bloomberg. A state judge issued a gag order in a high-profile case against a Queens political operative accused of stealing $1.1 million from Mayor Michael ...

John Haggerty, ex-Bloomberg aide accused of stealing $1M mayor's campaign ...

New York Daily News - Adam Lisberg - 
John Haggerty, once a trusted aide to Bloomberg, was in charge of running the mayor's Election Day operation with $1.1 million funneled through the state Independence Party. John Haggerty, accused of stealing $1.1 million from Mayor ...

Charges Upheld Against Political Consultant Accused of Stealing from Bloomberg ...

DNAinfo - Shayna Jacobs - 
MANHATTAN SUPREME COURT — A Manhattan judge upheld most grand larceny charges against a political consultant and fundraiser who allegedly swindled Mayor Michael Bloomberg's campaign out of more than $1 million for "poll-watching" ...

Judge slaps down Haggerty in Bloomberg campaign cash swipe case

New York Post - Laura Italiano - 
Accused Bloomberg campaign-cash crook John Haggerty failed today to convince a judge to toss the charges -- in fact earning a judicial tongue-lashing for arguing that he's a really nice guy who'd lose his job if convicted in the $1.1 ...

Judge Denies Political Operative's Request To Have Case Thrown Out

CBS New York - 
Polital operative John Haggerty, charged with bilking New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg out of more than $1 million, leaves criminal court in New York, Tuesday, March 15, 2011. A Manhattan judge denied Haggerty's request Tuesday to have the case against ...

Judge won't throw out NYC mayor's money case

AP - March 15, 2011 10:55 AM ET NEW YORK (AP) - A political operative charged with bilking New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg out of more than $1 million has lost a bid to have the case thrown out. A Manhattan judge denied John Haggerty's request Tuesday ...

The Saga goes on, and on, and on so all I can say is follow the money.

Before there was the "Oracle at Delphi" there was Count Vampire J. Machiavelli

VJ Machiavelli