Platinum Receivership Information

 

SECURITIES & EXCHANGE COMMISSION V. PLATINUM MANAGEMENT (NY) LLC, ET AL.

Platinum Receivership


AUGUST 15, 2018 WEBINAR VIDEO – Investor & Creditor Forum

July 23, 2018

VIA WEB POSTING

TO:
FROM:
RE:
Platinum Partners Investors and Creditors
Melanie L. Cyganowski, as Receiver
Investor & Creditor Forum

I am pleased to announce that I will hold a virtual forum for Platinum Partners Investors and Creditors on August 15, 2018 from 12:00 P.M. to 1:00 P.M. Eastern. During the forum, I plan to provide an update on the Receivership, including the steps I have taken since the last forum and our plans moving forward. There will also be time for questions.

Instructions for registering and participating in the forum by computer or telephone are provided below. If you would like to submit questions in advance, or have any questions regarding the forum, please direct them to platinumreceiver@otterbourg.com. Those participating by computer will be able to submit questions during the event using the computer service, but those participating by phone will be on mute and will need to send questions through the platinumreceiver@otterbourg.com email address. Finally, please note that we will utilize a court reporter, as well as video, to record the session. Thank you and I look forward to speaking with you soon.
Sincerely,

Melanie L. Cyganowski
Receiver

You are invited to a Platinum Receivership webinar.
When: August 15, 2018 12:00 PM (Eastern Time – US and Canada)

Topic: Investor & Creditor Forum

BY COMPUTER:

Please click the link below to join the webinar:
https://zoom.us/j/995380643

Please note: You must first download “Zoom” webinar software. Simply google “zoom.us” to download this free software.

OR IPHONE ONE-TAP:

+16699006833,,995380643# -OR- +16468769923,,995380643#

OR TELEPHONE:

Dial(for higher quality, dial a number based on your current location):
US: +1 669 900 6833 -OR- +1 646 876 9923

Webinar ID: 995 380 643

International numbers available: https://zoom.us/u/eBFnaDFpk

NOTICE OF ELECTRONIC SYSTEMS SECURITY INCIDENT

The Receiver is in the process of directly notifying certain individuals whose personal information may have been exposed as a result of a recent security incident involving a single email account on a cloud-based service used by Platinum. Specifically, Platinum recently identified suspicious computer-related activity and as a result, the Receiver immediately engaged LMG Security, a leading independent cybersecurity firm, which has been working to further secure Platinum’s systems, as well as conducting a comprehensive forensic review to determine the scope of the incident, including the specific data which may have been impacted.

Based on the investigation thus far, there was limited unauthorized access to a single email account on a cloud-based service used by Platinum from March 19, 2018 to May 19, 2018. Platinum is not aware of any impact on Platinum’s bank accounts or other assets as a result of this incident, nor is Platinum aware of any attempt to misuse any individual personal information which may have been exposed as a result of this incident.

In addition to its forensic analysis, LMG Security and Platinum took steps to minimize and prevent any additional unauthorized access to Platinum’s electronic systems or data. LMG Security’s findings have been reported to law enforcement and the Receiver’s team and professionals continue to work with the appropriate authorities.

While there is no evidence to suggest that there has been any attempt to misuse any of the personal information which may have been contained in the impacted data, those individuals who may have been directly affected by this incident have, or will receive, individual letters apprising them of the incident and informing them of the services which the Receiver is providing to them in an abundance of caution. Specifically, the Receiver, working with the cyber response team at Garden City Group, has established a call center to respond to inquiries by those individuals receiving letters from the Receiver, and is offering complimentary identify theft protection services through ID Experts®. This service includes 12 months of credit monitoring, a $1,000,000 insurance reimbursement policy, and fully managed id theft recovery services. With this protection, MyIDCare will help affected individuals resolve issues if their identity is compromised.

If you would like further information regarding the foregoing, please call (888) 866-5172.


JUNE 6, 2018 WEBINAR VIDEO – Investor & Creditor Forum

May 15, 2018

VIA WEB POSTING

TO:
FROM:
RE:
Platinum Partners Investors and Creditors
Melanie L. Cyganowski, as Receiver
Investor & Creditor Forum

I am pleased to announce that I will hold a virtual forum for Platinum Partners Investors and Creditors on June 6, 2018 from 12:00 P.M. to 1:00 P.M. Eastern. During the forum, I plan to provide an update on the Receivership, including the steps I have taken since the last forum and our plans moving forward. There will also be time for questions.

Instructions for registering and participating in the forum by computer or telephone are provided below. If you would like to submit questions in advance, or have any questions regarding the forum, please direct them to platinumreceiver@otterbourg.com. Those participating by computer will be able to submit questions during the event using the computer service, but those participating by phone will be on mute and will need to send questions through the platinumreceiver@otterbourg.com email address. Finally, please note that we will utilize a court reporter, as well as video, to record the session. Thank you and I look forward to speaking with you soon.
Sincerely,

Melanie L. Cyganowski
Receiver

You are invited to a Platinum Receivership webinar.
When: June 6, 2018 12:00 PM (Eastern Time – US and Canada)

Topic: Investor & Creditor Forum

BY COMPUTER:

Please click the link below to join the webinar:
https://zoom.us/j/995380643

Please note: You must first download “Zoom” webinar software. Simply google “zoom.us” to download this free software.

OR IPHONE ONE-TAP:

+16699006833,,995380643# -OR- +16468769923,,995380643#

OR TELEPHONE:

Dial(for higher quality, dial a number based on your current location):
US: +1 669 900 6833 -OR- +1 646 876 9923

Webinar ID: 995 380 643

International numbers available: https://zoom.us/u/eBFnaDFpk

DECEMBER 20, 2017 WEBINAR VIDEO – Investor & Creditor Forum

MELANIE L. CYGANOWSKI, RECEIVER c/o Otterbourg P.C. 230 Park Avenue, 30th Floor New York, NY 10169 E-mail: platinumreceiver@otterbourg.com Website: www.PlatinumReceivership.com

MARCH 1, 2018 WEBINAR VIDEO – Investor & Creditor Forum

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Nordlicht and Huberfeld Dumping Properties – if the SEC is going to get it, Let’s Spend it First

NORDLICHT AND HUBERFELD AND THE PROPERTY DUMP – 19.5$ FOR THE TAKING… SEC…?

PLATINUM’S PARTNERS ARE AT IT AGAIN, DUMPING PROPERTIES…

It is no secret that we feel that Huberfeld and Nordlicht and their “Platinum Partners” were serial schemers. They have, over a long and sordid history, increased their individual and collective wealth through a series of well-played investments in the stupidity or naivete of their victims. We have to give them credit… manipulating markets at well as you manipulate people and then enshrouding it all in a reputation of “Philanthropy.”

In the latest of twits and turns, they are dumping properties. Were we to be the rainmakers at the SEC and the IRS, we would be freezing these properties so they cannot be sold. Unfortunately, we are mere mortals and do not have the appropriate clout. But we are hoping perhaps someone is reading.

Between West 85th Street & West 86th Street   |    Riverside Dr./West End Ave. 

For More InformationAre you ready to tour 535 West End Avenue?Contact

Key Details

  • Condominium
  • Built in 2009
  • 29 Apartments
  • 20 Floors
$2,293

APARTMENTS FOR SALE –

There are a pair of 535 West End Avenue apartments in New York City up for sale by Huberfeld and Nordlicht:

The apartments are #10 and #15:
https://www.cityrealty.com/nyc/riverside-dr-west-end-ave/535-west-end-avenue/6164

The first apartment is owned by Laura Huberfeld — Wife of Murry Huberfeld of Platinum Partners and the Seabrook bribery case:
http://www.city-data.com/ny-properties/assessments/Manhattan/W/West-End-Avenue-89.html

The second apartment is owned by Mark Nordlicht of Platinum Partners — but it’s in a holding corp:
http://www.city-data.com/ny-properties/assessments/Manhattan/W/West-End-Avenue-90.html

Other Info
Mark Nordlicht sold his Bal Harbour Condo last year for close to $8M:
https://therealdeal.com/miami/2017/05/22/wife-of-alleged-hedge-fund-fraudster-sells-bal-harbour-condo-for-7-85m/

As of this past December, Mark Nordlicht and other Platinum executives had ‘exhausted’ at least $10 Million on their defense:
https://law.justia.com/cases/new-york/other-courts/2017/2017-ny-slip-op-32728-u.html

Mark Nordlicht just switched to his third (?) set of attorneys, Jose Baez:
https://www.law360.com/articles/1056757/platinum-boss-parts-with-quinn-emanuel-adds-celeb-lawyer

Our speculation:

The legal fees are building up or are anticipated to be very high — hence the need to sell the NY apartments.  As you recall Mark Nordlicht and associates are first facing a Criminal suit from the Federal Government and then following that case, the SEC wants to clawback $100 Million is management fees charged to clients of the failed Platinum Partners hedge fund (https://www.justice.gov/usao-edny/pr/platinum-partners-founder-and-chief-investment-officer-among-five-indicted-1-billion)

Guess it’s better to sell the apartments and spend the money on a legal defense then possibly lose the SEC trial and have the government take it.

Bottom line, a couple of lucky buyers may get a good deal on a high end condo in NYC!

 

Their Platinum Wives: Dahlia Kalter – Kalter Gilad Cook Islands Trust, OBH 2308 LLC, RRR

uri-landesman

Please, dear reader read carefully. The irony cannot be lost on you that every penny that disappeared from the various Platinum entities, wound up in the wives’ funds, accounts, trusts, real estate holdings, jewelry foundations etc.

Mark Nordlicht has all but convinced the courts that he is penniless. That’s probably true. But Dahlia Kalter Nordlicht? She has way more than 2 nickles to rub together.

Have you forgotten about the Herbert Stettin case from 2011? Have you not considered the defendants in that case and the connections among them?

See for yourselves: 

https://www.law360.com/articles/268406/rothstein-trustee-goes-after-hedge-fund-heads-for-40m

Fast-forward to 2016 and The Talk of the Sound:

Two New Rochelle Men Among Seven Indicted In A $1 Billion “Ponzi-esque” Investment Fraud

The Wall Street Journal reported that Platinum’s investors were focused in the observant Jewish community. Nordlicht and his wife Dahlia Kalter-Nordlicht are active members of Young Israel of New Rochelle, both are board members of the Westchester Torah Academy located in New Rochelle, NY and endowed The Fred Kahane Technological High School, an Americans for Israel and Torah (AMIT) school in Ashkelon Israel.

Three of those arrested attended Yeshiva University, according to The Commentator, the school’s official student newspaper,  Mark (Meir) Nordlicht graduated from Yeshiva University in 1990 with a bachelor’s in philosophy. Uri Landesman attended Yeshiva University in the 1980s. David Levy graduated from Yeshiva University in 2006.

According to news reports, Mark Nordlicht was considering taking out a second $7.5M mortgage on his home.

As the New York City-based hedge fund began to go under in December 2015, Nordlicht wrote that he was thinking about using $7.5 million from a second mortgage on his home to try to keep it afloat, the papers say. He also was considering fleeing the country, they say.

That property could not have been his primary residence in New Rochelle which is estimated to be worth about $1.5 million and is held in a trust. As Platinum Partners faltered, some time between 2012 and 2016, the property at 245 Trenor Avenue was transferred from Dahlia Kalter, Nordlicht’s wife and a past employee of Platinum Partners, to Kalter Gilad Cook Islands Trust Limited.

The property may have instead been one in Florida owned by OBH 2308 LLC, a limited liability company which owns 10295 Collins Ave Unit 2308 at One Bal Harbour Ritz Carlton. The 5,266 square foot apartment, with 4 bedrooms and 5 bathrooms overlooking the ocean, is currently listed for sale at $9,995,000, The realtor describes the property as “the largest unit for sale in the building”.

The Principal of OBH 2308 LLC is Dahlia Kalter.

Nordlicht, Levy, Landesman, SanFilippo and Mann are charged with securities fraud, investment adviser fraud, securities fraud conspiracy, investment adviser fraud conspiracy and wire fraud conspiracy for defrauding investors through, among other things, the overvaluation of their largest assets, the concealment of severe cash flow problems at Platinum’s signature fund, and the preferential payment of redemptions. Nordlicht, Levy, Small and Shulse are charged with securities fraud, securities fraud conspiracy and wire fraud conspiracy for defrauding Black Elk’s independent bondholders through a fraudulent offering document and diverting more than $95 million in proceeds to Platinum by falsely representing in the offering document that Platinum controlled approximately $18 million of the bonds when, in fact, Platinum controlled more than $98 million of the bonds.

Nordlicht, Levy, Landesman, SanFilippo, Mann, Small and Shulse will be arraigned later today before United States Magistrate Judge Lois Bloom at the United States Courthouse, 225 Cadman Plaza East, Brooklyn, New York. Shulse’s initial appearance for removal proceedings to the Eastern District of New York is scheduled for this afternoon at the United States Courthouse, 515 Rusk Avenue, Houston, Texas.

The charges were announced by Robert L. Capers, United States Attorney for the Eastern District of New York; William F. Sweeney, Jr., Assistant Director-in-Charge, Federal Bureau of Investigation, New York Field Office (FBI); and Philip Bartlett, Inspector-in-Charge, United States Postal Inspection Service, New York Division (USPIS).

“As alleged, Nordlicht and his cohorts engaged in one of the largest and most brazen investment frauds perpetrated on the investing public, earning Platinum more than $100 million in fees during the charged conspiracy. Platinum Partners purported to be a standard bearer in the hedge fund industry, reporting annual average returns of more than 17 percent since inception in 2003. In reality, their returns were the result of the overvaluation of their largest assets, which eventually led to Nordlicht and his co-conspirators operating Platinum like a Ponzi scheme, where they used loans and new investor funds to pay off existing investors,” stated United States Attorney Capers. “The charges and arrests announced today reflect our steadfast commitment to holding accountable hedge funds on Wall Street who rip off investors for personal gain.”  Mr. Capers thanked the Securities and Exchange Commission, New York Regional Office (SEC) for their significant cooperation and assistance during the investigation.

 

Continue reading

Following Platinum Partners – Links for Receivership

MELANIE L. CYGANOWSKI, RECEIVER c/o Otterbourg P.C. 230 Park Avenue, 30th Floor New York, NY 10169 E-mail: platinumreceiver@otterbourg.com Website: www.PlatinumReceivership.com

August 17, 2017

VIA WEB POSTING

Re:
Securities & Exchange Commission v. Platinum Management (NY) LLC, et al.
United States District Court for the Eastern District of New York
Case No.: 1:16-cv-06848-DLI-VMS

Dear Investors:

I am writing to you as the newly-appointed receiver of Platinum Credit Management, L.P.; Platinum Partners Credit Opportunities Master Fund LP; Platinum Partners Credit Opportunities Fund (TE) LLC; Platinum Partners Credit Opportunities Fund LLC; Platinum Partners Credit Opportunity Fund (BL) LLC; Platinum Liquid Opportunity Management (NY) LLC; and Platinum Partners Liquid Opportunity Fund (USA) L.P. (collectively, the “Receivership Entities” or “Platinum”) (collectively, “Platinum”). As Receiver, I am charged with, among other things, (i) taking control of and managing Platinum’s property and records (the “Receivership Assets”), (ii) taking actions as necessary and appropriate to preserve Receivership property, and (iii) taking actions as necessary and appropriate for the orderly liquidation of the Receivership Assets. The purpose of this letter is to advise you of the initial progress since my appointment and to explain how I intend to respond to your inquiries.

On June 23, 2017, the prior receiver, Bart M. Schwartz, resigned. As a result, by Order dated July 6, 2017, the Court appointed me as Receiver for the Receivership Entities. On July 21, 2017, the Court approved the retention of Otterbourg, P.C. as my legal counsel and Goldin Associates LLC as my financial advisor (collectively, the “Receivership Team”). Unless specifically modified, all previous court orders remain in place. A Second Amended Order Appointing Receiver, which sets forth the rights and responsibilities of the Receiver is expected to be entered in the near term. All documents, including a copy of the original Complaint for Injunctive and Other Relief against Platinum and its principals, Mark Nordlicht, David Levy, Daniel Small, Uri Landesman, Joseph Mann, Joseph Sanfilippo, and Jeffrey Shulse, filed by the Securities & Exchange Commission (“SEC”), Temporary Restraining Order, and Order Appointing Receiver can be viewed on this website.

Upon my appointment, the Receivership Team took immediate steps to secure and take control over Platinum’s accounts and books and records and implement cash management procedures. I also implemented procedures for the review and approval of all expenditures. The Receivership Team has prepared a 13-Week Cash Receipts and Disbursements Forecast, performed weekly actual vs. forecasted variance analyses, and is conducting daily and weekly reconciliations of Platinum’s cash and brokerage accounts.

The opening investment portfolio consisted of 90 investments in 69 entities. The assets of the Receivership Entities are diverse, but generally fall into three main asset categories: (i) life settlement investments (e.g., investments in life insurance policies), (ii) litigation finance investments, and (iii) “other” assets, which are primarily concentrated in the metals and mining and energy sectors, in companies that are mostly in the developmental stages. The nature of the Receivership Entities’ investments in the “other” assets varies. The Receivership Team is undertaking a thorough financial and legal analysis of the Receivership Entities’ position(s) in each investment, the rights of the Receivership Entity in the capital structure and pursuant to the operative documents, assessing the maintenance costs of the asset, and options available to the Receiver with respect to the monetization of the investment.

During the short time that I have been in control of the Receivership Assets, certain investments totaling approximately $8.6 million have been liquidated or are on the verge of liquidation. None of these assets has been liquidated in “fire sale” fashion. Indeed, one of them was monetized at par value. I believe that the life settlement and certain of the litigation finance investments are liquid and that there may be additional funds realized from their liquidation in the next several months.

As a general matter, however, I have not found support for the values reflected on Platinum’s books or for certain early indications of value in the Receivership. I look forward to working with Houlihan Lokey Financial Advisors, Inc., which I have retained to provide valuation services, and developing supportable valuation assessments.

I will report on our efforts by filing periodic reports with the Court. The reports will also be posted to this website set forth above. The most recent report: My Initial Status Report to the Court, which was filed on August 10, 2017, provides a more detailed review of the actions taken since my appointment and can be found on this website.

You can send general email inquiries to platinumreceiver@otterbourg.com. Although my staff and I will review all emails we receive, it is not practical for us to respond personally to all messages, not least because it would consume a significant amount of time. Accordingly, we will update the Frequently Asked Questions (“FAQ”)section on this website as needed to reflect your inquiries and our responses.

Thank you in advance for your cooperation and understanding.

Sincerely,

Melanie L. Cyganowski
Receiver

Case Information

RECEIVERSHIP ENTITIES
Platinum Credit Management, L.P.
Platinum Partners Credit Opportunities Master Fund LP
Platinum Partners Credit Opportunities Fund (TE) LLC
Platinum Partners Credit Opportunities Fund LLC
Platinum Partners Credit Opportunity Fund (BL) LLC
Platinum Liquid Opportunity Management (NY) LLC
Platinum Partners Liquid Opportunity Fund (USA) L.P.

CASE NUMBER
1:16-cv-6848 (DLI)(VMS)

COURT
United States District Court for the Eastern District of New York

JUDGE
Chief Judge Dora Lizette Irizarry

DATE FILED
December 19, 2016

LEGAL COUNSEL TO RECEIVER
Otterbourg P.C.
230 Park Avenue
New York, NY 10169
Phone: 212-661-9100
Fax: 212-682-6104
Attention: Adam C. Silverstein
Erik B. Weinick

FINANCIAL ADVISOR TO RECEIVER
Goldin Associates LLC
350 Fifth Avenue
The Empire State Building
New York, NY 10118
Phone: 212.593.2255
Fax: 212.888.2841
Attention: Marc Kirschner
William Edwards

RELATED CASES
1:16-cr-00640-DLI USA v. Nordlicht et al
1:16-cr-00640-DLI-1 Mark Nordlicht
1:16-cr-00640-DLI-2 David Levy
1:16-cr-00640-DLI-3 Uri Landesman
1:16-cr-00640-DLI-4 Joseph Sanfilippo
1:16-cr-00640-DLI-5 Joseph Mann
1:16-cr-00640-DLI-6 Daniel Small
1:16-cr-00640-DLI-7 Jeffrey Shulse

Docket Items for the above cases can be located at the PACER portal for the Eastern District of New York, located here.

A Platinum Exchange with the SEC – Civil Enforcement Case v. Criminal Case

Platinum Will Get SEC Docs While Criminal Case Advances

Law360, New York (July 10, 2017, 2:42 PM EDT) — A New York federal judge paused a civil enforcement case against the hedge fund Platinum Partners on Friday at the request of prosecutors while a related criminal case goes forward, rejecting complaints by several defendants that they would be deprived of the chance to learn about the government’s case against them.

As often happens, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission’s case against Platinum and executives accused of playing a role in a scheme to inflate the value of its investments was stayed for a criminal prosecution. All but two of the defendants asked for discovery to continue anyway, but U.S. District Judge Dora Irizarry said even limited document exchanges would threaten the defendants’ right against self-incrimination.

Besides, the judge’s order said, federal prosecutors have committed to turning over materials they get from the SEC, which will allow the defendants to prepare for the civil case during the criminal case. So far, she noted, government lawyers said they’ve turned over 13.5 million documents, with more to come.

“In effect, the only discovery that will not be had in this civil matter is ‘testimonial’ type discovery, such as depositions, as proposed by [several of the] defendants,” the judge wrote. “Opposing defendants can hardly be heard to complain that they will be deprived of discovery in this civil matter.”

The pending decision was mentioned briefly at a hearing Friday where the main item was the judge’s decision to sack the SEC’s receiver, Bart Schwartz of Guidepost Solutions LLC, after concluding that he improperly transferred millions from an escrow account to fund an investment the feds called “risky.”

In the underlying case, prosecutors and the government litigators accuse Platinum of covering up a liquidity crisis at one of its investment funds and lying to lenders to Black Elk Energy Offshore Operations LLC, a drilling company it owned, about the company’s health. Managers hid the hedge fund’s troubles until it filed for bankruptcy last year.

Kevin O’Brien of Ford O’Brien LLP, whose client Joseph Sanfilippo was a chief financial officer at one of Platinum’s funds, said Monday that the order was good news. Even though the case was stayed, he said, it was in some sense “only partial” because the defendants would still receive SEC documents.

……. To obtain the document from it’s original forum see http://www.law360.com

The case is Securities and Exchange Commission v. Platinum Management NY LLC et al., case number 1:16-cv-06848, in U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of New York.

More Huberfeld and Optionable Inc. – A PIECE OF PLATINUM ANYONE?

 

MURRAY HUBERFELD, MARK NORDLICHT AND OBTIONABLE….

Thanks to our contributor on this one. – LM

Murray Huberfeld grew up in the Bronx and growing up became accustomed to selling off bogus and fraudulent deals. He never grew out of the habit, evidenced by relentlessly ongoing activities in private sector and public market activities. Every case or situation in which he continues to remain unscathed represents an unfortunate continuation of the status quo. He is a link to the Rothstein scandal. I wonder what that’s a link to. Arnold Rothstein?
Optionable Inc, the brokerage located in Valhalla, New York, transacts in the brokerage of
energy derivatives to brokerage and financial services firms globally. On January 22, 2007, NYMEX Holdings, parent to the New York Mercantile Exchange, issued a news release that the they were purchasing a 19% stake in the pink sheet Optionable Inc (OTC:OPBL). While the purchase may be questionable in and of itself, the history of those involved and one particular person tend to stand out.

NYMEX Chairman R. Schaeffer’s announcement of a 19% stake in Optionable, which increased revenues to $16 million from under $6 million. Such was reflected in Optionable’s stock price. But behind the commodity derivative brokerage’s arguably manufactured numbers exists a clinging reliance on related party transactions and often depends on one sole supplier or customer. Such parties include Capital Energy Services, a firm with a President and CEO accounting for a significant interest in Optionable’s revenue last year.

The Bank of Montreal must come as no surprise. According to Optionable filings, this bank accounted for a comparable amount of the Company’s revenues. Optionable received an advantage from this practice, achieving almost 80% margins when otherwise comparing to 56% with nonrelated parties.

David Lee, Bank of Montreal Commodity Trader, accounted for 18% of Optionable’s revenue. Mark Nordlicht founded Optionable Inc in 2000 with the backing of his like-minded morally challenged father, Jules Nordlicht, who had been federally prosecuted for manipulating the oil markets and withholding $27 million in illegal profits.

According to an April 2017 New York Post Article by Roddy Boyd, Jules owns 2.19 million shares.
635 Beach 19th Street
Far Rockaway, NY 11691
contact@optionable.com
Source: OTC Markets
NY Post: Roddy Boyd

Jona Rechnitz: Loan Shark? Diamond Dealer? Lucky Gambler? Real Estate Mogul? Shoshana by any other name…

 

jona rechnitz_crop_exact

NYPost: http://nypost.com/2017/04/26/key-witness-in-nypd-corruption-probe-was-an-alleged-loan-shark/

Key witness in NYPD corruption probe was an alleged ‘loan shark’’

The government’s key witness in multiple corruption probes was a part-time “loan shark” who made money doling out predatory loans, court documents alleged on Tuesday.

Jona Rechnitz — the government’s witness against two NYPD cops accused of taking bribes — “was nothing more than a loan shark” when it came to his business dealings with Hamlet Peralta, the former owner of a Harlem eatery that was popular with cops, Peralta’s lawyer said.

Peralta, the former owner of the Hudson River Cafe, stands accused of running a $12 million Ponzi scheme tied to an allegedly fictitious wholesale liquor business.

Peralta’s lawyer, Cesar de Castro, made the allegations against Rechnitz as part of a legal tug-of-war with feds about what evidence can be introduced at Peralta’s upcoming May trial.

The government wants to call as witnesses victims of Peralta’s alleged scheme who were recruited by Rechnitz — and who learned of the scheme through Rechnitz.

De Castro has objected, arguing that statements made by Rechnitz cannot be offered as the truth because he was engaged in his own loan-sharking scheme.

“Evidence at trial will show that (Rechnitz) was not Mr. Peralta’s agent but the architect of his own scheme in order to bleed Mr. Peralta dry,” de Castro said.

Rechnitz’s lawyer, Alan Levine, declined to comment.

Rechnitz, a real estate investor, is also the government’s key witness in the upcoming bribery trial of Norman Seabrook, former head of NYC’s correction officers’ union.

 

http://nypost.com/2017/04/26/key-witness-in-nypd-corruption-probe-was-an-alleged-loan-shark/