Can’t Make This Stuff Up… Hasidic Power Broker With Mayoral Access

 

Hasidic political power broker has inside access to mayor, new emails reveal

Daily News:

A Hasidic political power broker was so deep inside the mayor’s inner circle that he got VIP treatment from top City Hall staffers and regularly corresponded with de Blasio — and he even had the First Lady’s cell phone number, newly released emails show.

Yitzchok (Jules) Fleischer, a gatekeeper in the Bobov Hasidic community, called in favors from the mayor for a job and a handicap parking placard. He offered Hizzoner advice on dealing with the police union and repeatedly texted Chirlane McCray on her cell.

The 90 pages of emails obtained by the Daily News through a Freedom of Information Law request show Fleischer was regularly in the mayor’s ear — sometimes asking for help, other times serving as an ad hoc political consultant.

Paperwork on behalf of Yitzchok (Jules) Fleischer to get a vehicle placard is pictured here.
Paperwork on behalf of Yitzchok (Jules) Fleischer to get a vehicle placard is pictured here. (Obtained by Daily News)

His role as an important go-between for de Blasio and 5,000 votes he could deliver in the Orthodox community allowed him to be a nudge to the mayor and sometimes McCray.

Sometimes he got to be too much, emails show.

“Chirlane says you keep texting her and wanting to meet,” de Blasio emailed Fleischer on Jan. 13, 2015. “Unless that is specific to some of the work she is doing, you should stop reaching out to her and tell me what’s on your mind.

“Then I will tell you if I can help or not,” the mayor adds. “Deal with me, not her.”

Email records show Fleischer wasn’t shy about offering advice on how to handle de Blasio’s ongoing dispute with the Patrolmen’s Benevolent Association.

The wannabe adviser suggested that de Blasio apologize just like President Kennedy did after the Bay of Pigs disaster.

“I think U should do the ‘same’, explain on air that U stand with the PD, & slowly distance yourself from Al (Sharpton) it will help U a lot,” Fleischer wrote Jan. 8, 2015.

“I saw this and appreciate your thought,” de Blasio replied the next day.

Fleischer also felt emboldened enough to ask the mayor for an undisclosed job in the administration. The position — which went to someone else — is redacted from the email exchange for privacy reasons.

 

CONTINUE WITH THE NEW YORK DAILY NEWS

 

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A Shell Game and American Express – the $260K Swindle

http://www.nydailynews.com/new-york/brooklyn/men-busted-swiping-270g-amex-fake-nyc-company-article-1.3289265

Six men busted for swiping $270G from American Express through defunct Brooklyn shell company

Six men stole $270,000 from American Express through an elaborate scam using a Brooklyn shell company, prosecutors said Thursday.

Five of the accused rip-off artists were arraigned and pleaded not guilty to grand larceny charges in Manhattan Supreme Court.

They are accused of filtering fraudulent transactions through a bogus corporation called 92K Blvd. between November 2013 and January 2014.

Defendants Yehuda Tyrnauer, 29, Naftali Safern, 30, Moshe Pomerantsev, 22, Bezalel Mermelstein, 40, and Samuel Berkovits, 50, allegedly used personal credit cards to initiate transactions with 92K Blvd.-affiliated accounts.

Israel Fischer, 62, owned the AmEx merchant account linked to the fake company, prosecutors said.

After making purchases for electronics and other goods, the crew requested refunds from AmEx but the credit giant could not recover the funds they had issued to the cardholders because 92K Blvd. was actually defunct and there were insufficient funds in the account, the Manhattan DA said

 

Defendants Yehuda Tyrnauer, 29, Naftali Safern, 30, Moshe Pomerantsev, 22, Bezalel Mermelstein, 40, and Samuel Berkovits, 50, allegedly used personal credit cards to initiate transactions with 92K Blvd.-affiliated accounts.

See the article in its original format in the New York Daily News

Off the Books Entitlements, Section 8, Bilking the System in One of the Most Gentrified Neighborhoods

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NY Daily News Photograph.

Hasidic neighborhood in South Williamsburg is a top beneficiary of Section 8, but some question whether law is strictly followed

From the NY Daily News

Little boys in yarmulkes peer from apartment balconies, watching the men below toss bread into a bonfire.

The annual spring ritual marks the first day of Passover in the Hasidic Jewish enclave of South Williamsburg, Brooklyn, where daily life is built on ancient laws and religious devotion. But the insular community depends on outside money to survive — federal subsidies to help many low-income Hasidic families cover the rent.

New York City’s 123,000 vouchers make this the largest Section 8 voucher program in the country. Reluctant landlords and rising rents are making vouchers nearly impossible to use in many areas of the city. Tenants, especially larger families, are often relegated to the edges of Brooklyn and the Bronx. That’s why this cluster of Hasidic households stands out.

The neighborhood is home to one of the highest concentrations of Section 8 housing vouchers in the city, according to federal data analyzed by WNYC and the Daily News. In several of its census tracts, Section 8 tenants compose more than 30% of residents, a level reached only in scattered pockets of the Bronx.

Continue reading

Hate Crime Beating, Hasidic Thugs, Politically Connected Shomrim and 4 Years – NO JUSTICE!

taj-patterson

THE NY DAILY NEWS REPORTS:

Hasidic man gets four years for role in group beating of gay black man in Brooklyn

It’s four years for an eye.

A Brooklyn judge sentenced a Hasidic Jewish man to four years in prison for participating in a vicious beatdown that left a gay black man blind in one eye.

Mayer Herskovic was not the only person who assaulted Taj Patterson on Flushing Ave. in December 2013. But he’s the only attacker getting prison time.

“Those who stomped and chased (Patterson) did try to injure him. The defendant was involved, he participated and was found guilty for that,” said Brooklyn Supreme Court Justice Danny Chun.

Cop: We used trick to get video of Hasidic men beating victim

Patterson, 25, did not attend the court proceedings in Brooklyn Supreme Court on Thursday — he previously said he wants to move on with his life.

Nonetheless, the lasting effects of the senseless attack will remain with him.

“Mr. Patterson asked himself why all this happened to him and he concluded it’s because he was a young black male in a predominately Orthodox neighborhood,” Assistant District Attorney Timothy Gough said on behalf of the victim.

According to trial testimony, Patterson was walking to his Fort Greene home when men — some belonging to the Williamsburg Shomrim, a Jewish patrol group — began chasing after him. The attackers mistook him for the suspect in a car vandalism streak, prosecutors previously said.

EXCLUSIVE: Gay, black man who was brutally attacked sues city

“This defendant, that group and the community couldn’t see him as an individual, but as a criminal,” said Gough, who recommended Herskovic receive five years in prison.

Video surveillance showed men chasing Patterson for blocks. One person with a walkie-talkie was identified at trial as Yoelli (Joel) Itzkowitz, but he was not questioned for his role in the attack.

One of Patterson’s lawyers has urged the Brooklyn DA’s office to indict Itzkowitz, alleging prosecutors have overlooked Itzkowitz because his brother is the politically connected coordinator of the Williamsburg Shomrim.

Four men in addition to Herskovic were charged in the beating. Two of the cases were dismissed and two of the attackers took plea deals sentencing them to 150 hours of community service each.

“Amongst all participants who stomped and beat Mr. Patterson, this defendant wasn’t the most culpable,” Chun said of Herskovic. “Mr. Patterson was chased for blocks, but not by the defendant before me.”

Prosecutors placed Herskovic at the scene thanks to DNA found on one of Patterson’s sneakers that was thrown to the roof of a nearby building.

The “deeply scarred” Patterson asked the judge to sentence Herskovic to the maximum of 15 years in prison for the second-degree gang assault and unlawful imprisonment charges.

“When Patterson woke up in the hospital, he didn’t know where he was. He was upset, frightened and alone,” said Gough.

The victim has had surgery three times, but he’ll never regain eyesight in his right eye.

“I wish I can take back what happened to Mr. Patterson all those years ago … I hope he finds peace for all he has suffered and endured,” Herskovic told the judge as he pleaded for a lenient sentence.

“I’m 24, my life is about family, helping people,” he added. “I work as a construction worker. I work with all kinds of people, black, white, Hispanic, gay and not gay.”

Nevertheless, his lawyer Stuart Slotnick asserted outside of court that “the DNA evidence was completely and totally flawed.”

TO READ THE ARTICLE IN ITS ENTIRETY FROM THE NY DAILY NEWS CLICK HERE.

KARMA STRIKES BACK: In new suit, former BK DA Hynes alleged to have had “policy, custom and practice of deliberate indifference towards witness tampering and intimidation of victims of pedophiles and their families within the ultra-Orthodox community”

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Alleged pedophile protector, former Brooklyn District Attorney Charles Hynes

From the NY Daily News:

A Brooklyn dad claims the borough’s former district attorney Charles Hynes targeted him while cutting a sweetheart deal with a prominent rabbi accused of sexually abusing boys.

Samuel Kellner says in a federal civil rights lawsuit that Hynes falsely charged him with extortion after he led an effort to lock up Baruch Lebovits.

“The ‘investigation’ by Hynes into [Kellner] deviated so egregiously from acceptable law enforcement activity as to demonstrate an intentional or reckless disregard for proper procedures,” reads the lawsuit targeting Hynes and the city.

The sordid saga began in 2008 when Lebovits allegedly molested Kellner’s son.

A prosecutor told Kellner that the district attorney’s office wasn’t going to open an investigation because the alleged offense was a misdemeanor and there were no other known victims, the suit says.

But Kellner, working with a detective, found other boys who were preyed upon by Lebovits.

Hynes’ office launched a probe but Kellner claims the former DA did nothing when Lebovits’ supporters succeeded in convincing one of his victims to drop the case.

“Hynes’ deliberate indifference towards [the boy’s] plight and failure to protect him was part of a policy, custom and practice of deliberate indifference towards witness tampering and intimidation of victims of pedophiles and their families within the ultra-Orthodox community,” says the suit filed in Brooklyn Federal Court.

Lebovits was ultimately convicted in March 2010 of multiple counts of sexual assault and sentenced to serve up to 32 years.

Kellner’s joy was short-lived.

He claims in the suit that Hynes quietly dismissed his son’s case against Lebovits in October 2010.

“The suffering and courage of a victim in coming forward to report his abuse meant nothing to Hynes,” Kellner’s attorney Niall Macgiollabhui wrote in the suit.

Things got worse for Kellner in April 2011 when he was charged with trying to blackmail Lebovits’ wealthy family and paying a man to falsely accuse the rabbi.

Hynes held a news conference trumpeting Kellner’s arrest.

Lebovits was sprung from jail the next day. His conviction was overturned in 2012.

“What is truly shocking is that instead of locking up pedophiles and protecting children, Hynes was instrumental in securing the release of a notorious predator from prison and dismissing the cases of two victims he and his office knew to have been abused,” Macgiollabhui told the Daily News.

“At some point Hynes will have to explain why he conspired in the shadows with the family of a convicted child rapist to undermine the conviction his own office had just secured.”

The criminal charges against Kellner were dropped in March 2014 after a prosecutor re-examining the case found inconsistencies in the accounts of two key witnesses.

Lebovits pleaded guilty to reduced charges in May 2014 and was sentenced to serve another year.

He was released after just 86 days.

Hynes’ lawyer did not return a request for comment.

A spokesman for the city’s Law Department said it will review the complaint.

Kellner filed a defamation suit against the Jewish Daily Forward newspaper in November 2014. That case was settled in January under a confidentiality agreement.

 

 

NORM… – If You Were Going to Defraud Your Fellow Officers – You Needed to Learn the Ropes!!!

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Ex-correction union boss Norman Seabrook wasn’t properly supervised and showered execs with ‘luxury gifts,’ suit says

http://www.nydailynews.com/news/crime/norman-seabrook-showered-execs-luxury-gifts-suit-article-1.2852569

Correction union execs weren’t keeping an eye on now-indicted ex-president Norman Seabrook when he invested pension money in a “Ponzi scheme” – because he had long showered them with gifts such as cars, a new lawsuit alleges.

The feds have alleged Murray Huberfeld, who ran an investment firm called Platinum Partners, agreed to give Seabrook a kickback in late 2013 — so he would invest union money in one of its high-risk funds.

Seabrook dumped some $20 million of Correction Officers’ Benevolent Association money into Platinum Partners in 2014.

That December, Seabrook received a $60,000 cash kickback in an $800 Ferragamo bag and became “angry,” griping it wasn’t enough, Manhattan U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara has alleged.

Hedge fund holding Seabrook’s investment files for bankruptcy

Sources previously told the Daily News that the middleman who delivered the money to Seabrook was Jona Rechnitz, a major donor to de Blasio’s mayoral bid and the now-shuttered Campaign for One New York.

Platinum Partners has since declared bankruptcy, however – making COBA’s investments in the fund “virtually worthless,” according to the Manhattan federal court lawsuit, filed by Jeffrey Norton, of Newman Ferrara, and Philip Seelig. Seelig was COBA president from 1979 to 1992.

Seabrook got away with investing in Platinum — without COBA’s executive board knowing or approving the investment — because execs “had, for years, failed to supervise Seabrook in any meaningful way,” the suit charges.

“Indeed, Seabrook had ensured the Executive Board’s quiescence through liberal dispensations of gift cards, cars, and plush job assignments away from Rikers Island, which ensured they exercised no due diligence over Seabrook’s activities,” court papers say.

Indicted former NYC correction union boss wants Disney vacation

The suit also slams COBA’s law firm, Koehler & Isaacs LLP, as being “more loyal to Seabrook than to COBA” — and distracting union leadership — to protect its business interests.

“Although Koehler & Isaacs knew that Seabrook had made the high stakes investment, its contract with COBA could be imperiled if Koehler & Isaacs made any representations that called into question Seabrook’s activities,” court papers say.

The feds have alleged Murray Huberfeld agreed to give Seabrook a kickback in late 2013.

The feds have alleged Murray Huberfeld agreed to give Seabrook a kickback in late 2013.

(Jefferson Siegel/New York Daily News)

“Accordingly, Koehler & Isaacs neither advised nor warned the Executive Board about the investment.

“Instead, Koehler & Isaacs helped Seabrook co-opt the Executive Board by providing the members with GPS devices and other luxury gifts,” the suit says.

Seabrook loudly pleads not guilty to corruption charges

COBA President Elias Husamudeen said in a statement to The News that the filing is “yet another frivolous suit” brought by those who have an axe to grind with the union.

“The fact of the matter is that no matter how many lawsuits are brought against our union, we remain focused on representing and fighting for our members, 24 hours a day, seven days a week,” Husamudeen said.

Koehler & Isaacs also shot back at the suit, calling the allegations “salacious” and misleading.

“The facts will show that Koehler & Isaacs, along with COBA’s financial advisors, performed a thorough and diligent vetting of the union’s investment in Platinum Partners, which at the time of the investment, produced among the highest returns for investors in the hedge fund industry,” the firm said in a statement.

A new dimension to Seabrook corruption scandal?

To read the remainder of the article click here.

Famed J.P. Morgan Building at 23 Wall Street in Play – and Urinating Bosses…

project_rs_23wall

23 Wall Street – Our Theories

We have written on the famed J.P. Morgan piece of property more times than perhaps any other Blog. We have written on the various Jona Rechnitz and Jeremy Reichberg properties/investments/shady dealings. We have written about Chetrit and Bistricer, China Sonangol, Queensway, Angola. The story below from “The Real Deal” almost feels like something we could have written. But, of course, we didn’t.

The new buyer, as you will see below from the article on the bottom of the page, Jack Terzi, lacks certain social graces (or did in 2012). He apparently was an abusive boss who, according to reports in the NY Daily News from 2012, engaged in bizarre behavior. In the interest of full disclosure, his employees at his yogurt shops felt that he was “strictly business” and “humble.” Hard to tell.

We can say this:

It would not surprise us if nestled within the many companies listed on the Africa-Israel website with reference to the Israel Stock Exchange we were to find the new J.P. Morgan buyer’s name, his company or some financial/management synergy with Africa Israel and perhaps concurrently with China Sonangol. It will take a while to find and some might write this one off as a leap. We don’t think so.

It is a Buyer’s market not a Seller’s market in Manhattan right now (if the comment about the losses below by The Real Deal is any indication). China Sonangol/Africa-Israel/Sam Pa/ want out of New York but we doubt they would take a financial loss. We think that it will prove to be anything but a loss.

AFI Group

The company is traded on the Tel Aviv Stock Exchange.
For more information, please press on the image below.

Click here for more information

Subsidiaries:

Africa Israel Properties
Click here for more information
Africa Israel Residences
Click here for more information
 Danya Cebus
 Click here for more information
 Africa Israel Industries
 Click here for more information
 Negev Ceramics
 Click here for more information
Dor Alon
Click here for more information
Blue Square
Click here for more information

 

 

Paydirt: The Compass unicorn, a more modest buyer pool, 23 Wall in play … & more

Billionaires hiding? We’ll take the millionaires: Compass’ valuation comes at a time when Manhattan’s high-end residential market is taking body blows. Developers finally seem willing to accept things aren’t where they were in 2014. They’re either offering fat discounts (Extell at One Manhattan Square, World Wide Group and Rose Associates at 252 East 57th Street), pushing sales back (JDS & PMG at 111 West 57th Street) or abandoning ship (Witkoff at Park Lane, Chetrit & Bistricer at the Sony Building).  “The next two years will be the year of the deal,” PMG’s Kevin Maloney told Bloomberg.

Developers who set their sights a little more main street have been faring better: Condos priced between $500,000 and $999,000 have sold five times as fast as their $10 million-and-up counterparts, according to a Miller Samuel analysis of a decade of residential sales.

You don’t know Jack: JTRE’s Jack Terzi is in contract to buy 23 Wall Street, a landmarked property that was once the headquarters of J.P. Morgan & Co. – it was dubbed the “House of Morgan” — but of late has been a pox on Lower Manhattan. The long-vacant building is owned by the shadowy China Sonangol, a joint venture between Sam Pa’s Queensway Group and the nation of Angola — go figure. Sources told the New York Post that Terzi will be buying the property at a discount to the $150 million Sonangol paid for it in 2008. That’s hard to fathom, except for the fact that Pa is under investigation for allegations of financial crimes, according to the FT.

Terzi, who grew up in Gravesend and cut his teeth at Hidrock Realty, has made a number of splashy acquisitions of late, including a number of $20 million-plus buys in Midtown East. But this deal, if he does close on it, elevates him to a different level — giving him control of more than 130,000 square feet in the heart of Lower Manhattan.

 

Sam-Pa-23-Wall-Street (1)

 

THE NEW YORK POST:

http://nypost.com/2016/08/30/long-vacant-wall-street-landmark-sold-to-retail-developer/

 

For a tall tale about how China Sonangol may or may not have come to its original purchase through individuals mixed up in the NYPD scandals, read The Post’s Steve Cuozzo’s story from July 4.

The 160,000 square feet stretches from the landmarked 23 Wall St. where banker Morgan once had his private offices, around the sloped corner to portions of the base floors of 33 Wall and 15 Broad St.

The stone fortress has been touted as a retail play for years, but it’s stood mostly dark — due to absentee ownership and landmark-related restrictions.

Prospective deals to lease it to Brooks Brothers and a multi-media event company fell through but Hermes has been a tenant since 2007.

The upper stories of 15 Broad next door were converted into apartments.

JACK TERZI – NEW YORK DAILY NEWS:

http://www.nydailynews.com/new-york/ex-worker-suing-real-estate-boss-jack-terzi-5-million-abuse-fines-urinating-article-1.1134148

 

Ex-worker suing real estate boss, Jack Terzi, for $5 million for abuse, fines, and urinating

A foul-mouthed boss from hell unzipped more than his lip in torturing his young assistant.

Brash real estate broker Jack Terzi urinated on the underling’s clothes during a three-year reign of terror in their Manhattan office, according to a astonishing new lawsuit.

The allegedly abusive broker was accused by ex-employee Albert Sultan of abuse that included cutting four-letter insults, sharp flying objects and bizarre fines.

Sultan, hired shortly after Terzi launched his company in 2009, “became emotionally distraught, was humiliated and embarrassed … by the systematic and continuous unlawful harassment,” charged the 15-page suit filed Wednesday.

Court papers contain a cruel recital of Terzi’s perverse management style, including the time he “urinated on a garment” belonging to Sultan as others watched.

Terzi was accused of throwing a shoe and a pair of scissors at his young assistant, hurling insults like “f—— idiot” and “piece of s—“ — and repeatedly “sneezing in (Sultan’s) face in a contemptuous fashion.”

Terzi, in a countersuit, charged Sultan was a conniving backstabber who launched his own business with confidential information stolen from Jack Terzi Real Estate.

Sultan, of Eatontown, N.J., declined further discussion about his ex-boss.