Posts

Showing posts from December, 2008

Victoria Ring Is A Freelance Paralegal & Entrepreneur

Image
By: Joel Irving

Victoria Ring is a freelance Certified Paralegal, Certified Bankruptcy Assistant, and the CEO of two successful businesses. Victoria Ring is the reason why law firms should not outsource their legal work to other countries. Ms. Ring has over 20 years of small business marketing experience, which she has used to build a successful freelance business working from home. Moreover, Victoria Ring is credited with being the first paralegal to develop a virtual bankruptcy assistant service that provided online paralegal services to bankruptcy attorneys nationwide.

After building a successful business of her own (The Lawyer Assistant), Victoria Ring discovered that there was a lack of qualified individuals who could draft a well-detailed bankruptcy petition. So in 2003, Victoria Ring began training attorneys, paralegals, and other professionals on how to draft a well-detailed, professional looking bankruptcy petition. Additionally, Ms. Ring has assisted thousands of people in st…

Outsourcing to India makes no sense

Image
By: Joel Irving

Why bypass the fact that there are highly qualified paralegals who would be more than willing to set up shop at home as independent contractors, performing such duties as: contract reviews, document review for due diligence, patent drafting, simple filings and legal research? All of these tasks can be done for the same or less than what is being paid to lawyers in India. (See, Wise Law Blog) What do you think? Isn't it about time that U.S. law firms woke up and smelled the coffee? Outsourcing hurts our economy and causes the unnecessary elimination of U.S. jobs.

HAPPY HOLIDAYS

Image
By: Joel Irving

Happy Holidays to all my readers.

New Courthouse Will Seek Silver Certification from Green Buildings Council

(NYCGOV) Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg, State Chief Judge Judith S. Kaye, Borough President James P. Molinaro, Council Member Michael E. McMahon, Dormitory Authority of the State of New York (DASNY) Executive Director Paul T. Williams Jr., Richmond County District Attorney Daniel M. Donovan, Jr. and Criminal Justice Coordinator John Feinblatt today broke ground on a new courthouse facility for Richmond County. The new 182,720 square foot courthouse will house supreme court, criminal court and jury assembly and replace cramped space in separate buildings with state-of-the art, environmentally friendly facilities in one location. The five-story courthouse building, 660 car parking garage and memorial green will sit on a 4.04 acre lot in the St. George neighborhood. The site is currently a municipal parking lot. The budget for the project is $220 million and is estimated to be completed in 2012.

"Not only is this Staten Island's first new courthouse in more than 75 years, the City i…

GOVERNOR PATERSON, CONCLUDES HOLIDAY VISIT WITH TROOPS IN IRAQ AND AFGHANISTAN

(NYGOV) After visiting with members of the armed forces in Iraq, Governor Paterson and U.S. Representatives Steve Israel (D-NY) and Anthony Weiner (D-NY) toured Afghanistan Tuesday as they completed their visit with American troops stationed in both countries.

In Afghanistan, the delegation met with Afghanistan President Hamid Karzai and nearly 200 New York troops. Governor Paterson awarded Purple Hearts to several service members. More...

ExxonMobil Charged in Boston Harbor Oil Spill

(USDOJ) BOSTON, MASS. - A criminal information was filed today in federal court charging a wholly owned subsidiary of ExxonMobil Corporation with violating the criminal provisions of the Clean Water Act in connection with a spill of approximately 15,000 gallons of diesel oil into the Mystic River from ExxonMobil’s oil terminal in Everett, Mass.

United States Attorney Michael J. Sullivan, Stacey Mitchell, Chief, Environmental Crimes Section, Michael Hubbard, Special Agent in Charge of the Environmental Protection Agency’s Criminal Investigation Division in New England, and Rear Admiral Dale Gabel, Commander First Coast Guard District, U.S. Coast Guard, announced today that ExxonMobil Pipeline Company has been charged with a criminal violation of the Clean Water Act in connection with the January 2006 spill and has signed a plea agreement in which it will pay a total monetary payment of more than $6.1 million and agree to have the Everett terminal monitored by court appointed observer. T…

ATTORNEY GENERAL CUOMO SECURES HEALTH INSURANCE COVERAGE FOR BREAST CANCER PATIENT’S LIFE-SAVING DIAGNOSTIC TEST AND TREATMENTS AFTER REPEATED DENIALS

(NYOAG) SYRACUSE, N.Y. (December 23, 2008) – Attorney General Andrew M. Cuomo today announced that his office has secured full health insurance coverage for a Central New York breast cancer patient’s life-saving diagnostic test and treatments after they had been repeatedly denied.

Christine Langlois of Onondaga County learned that she had suffered a recurrence of breast cancer in late 2006. Her claim for a doctor ordered Positron Emission Tomography (PET) scan was denied by her health insurer, Excellus, as was an appeal to the state Insurance Department. Additionally, her subsequent radiation treatments were likewise denied. She then told her story during the Health Care breakout session at the Attorney General’s Community Forum at the State Fairgrounds in November. Once Attorney General Cuomo heard about her situation, he directed his Health Care Bureau to contact the company and was able to reverse the decision. More...

Justice Department Files Lawsuit Alleging Sexual Harassment by Muskegon County, Michigan

(USDOJ) WASHINGTON — The Department of Justice today announced the filing of a lawsuit against the County of Muskegon, Mich., alleging discrimination against a former employee by subjecting her to a hostile work environment.

The Department's complaint, filed in the United States District Court for the Western District of Michigan, alleges that the county violated Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, when, among other things, it failed to respond with adequate remedial measures to her complaints of multiple instances of sexual harassment, and to similar complaints made by other employees. More...

Announcement From Manhattan District Attorney Robert M. Morgenthau

Image
(NYDA) Manhattan District Attorney Robert M. Morgenthau announced today the results of the investigation into the August 18, 2007, fire at the Deutsche Bank building, located at 130 Liberty Street, in which Firefighters Robert Beddia and Joseph Graffagnino lost their lives.

Three individuals and one company have been indicted for manslaughter, criminally negligent homicide and reckless endangerment in the deaths of the firefighters. Those indicted are: JEFFREY MELOFCHIK, the Site Safety Manager for the project’s construction manager, Bovis Lend Lease LMB, Inc. (“Bovis”); MITCHEL ALVO, the Director of Abatement, for Bovis’ subcontractor, THE JOHN GALT CORP. (“GALT”) and SALVATORE DePAOLA, a GALT foreman. GALT has also been indicted on the same charges. More...

Fiat Agrees to $7 Million Fine in Connection with Payment of $4.4 Million in Kickbacks by Three Subsidiaries Under the U.N. Oil for Food Program

(USDOJ) WASHINGTON – Fiat S.p.A. (Fiat), an Italian corporation based in Turin, Italy, has agreed to a $7 million penalty for illegal kickbacks paid to officials of the former Iraqi government by three of its subsidiaries, Acting Assistant Attorney General Matthew Friedrich of the Criminal Division announced today. Fiat agreed to pay the fine as part of a deferred prosecution agreement with the Department. The matter is part of the Justice Department’s ongoing investigation into the U.N. Oil for Food program.

Criminal informations were filed today against three Fiat subsidiaries in U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia. Iveco S.p.A. (Iveco) and CNH Italia S.p.A. (CNH Italia) were each charged with one count of conspiracy to commit wire fraud and to violate the books and records provisions of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA). CNH France S.A. (CNH France) was charged with conspiracy to commit wire fraud. More...

Attorney General Brown Urges California Supreme Court to Invalidate Proposition 8

(CAAG) Sacramento – Attorney General Edmund G. Brown Jr. today called upon the California Supreme Court to invalidate Proposition 8 because it deprives people of the right to marry—an aspect of liberty that the Supreme Court has concluded is guaranteed by the California Constitution.

“Proposition 8 must be invalidated because the amendment process cannot be used to extinguish fundamental constitutional rights without compelling justification,” Attorney General Brown said. More...

U.S. Department of Labor publishes final rule on priority of service for veterans

(USDOL) WASHINGTON, D.C. — The U.S. Department of Labor's Veterans' Employment and Training Service (VETS) today announced the publication of a final rule on priority of service for veterans and eligible spouses. The new regulations apply to "any workforce preparation, development or delivery program or service that is directly funded, in whole or in part, by the Department of Labor," as provided by the Jobs for Veterans Act (P.L. 107-288), enacted in 2002.

"Priority of service is an important acknowledgment of the sacrifices of the men and women who have served in the U.S. armed forces," said Charles Ciccolella, assistant secretary of labor for VETS. "The department's strategic vision for priority of service honors veterans and eligible spouses of veterans as our heroes at home, and envisions that the employment and training programs funded by the department, including the workforce investment system, will identify, inform and deliver comprehensive…

FDIC Announces $114 Million Settlement With Subprime Credit Card Company Charged With Deceptive Credit Card Marketing

(FDIC) The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) announced today a settlement with CompuCredit Corporation, Atlanta, Georgia (CompuCredit), a company charged with deceptive marketing of subprime credit cards with three FDIC-supervised banks in violation of the Federal Trade Commission Act (FTC Act). Two of the banks previously settled with the FDIC.

The settlement will result in an order that will correct the FTC Act violations, and provide restitution of approximately $114 million to consumers in the form of credits for certain fees arising from the deceptive marketing practices. Eligible consumers whose current balances are less than the amount of credits to be applied will receive cash refunds, the aggregate amount of which is estimated to be approximately $3.7 million. All other eligible consumers will receive credits only. No action by consumers is required; eligible consumers will be contacted directly by CompuCredit. The credits and cash refunds will be verified by an ind…

Bankruptcy Filings Over One Million for Fiscal Year 2008

(USCOURTS) Dec 15, 2008 — Bankruptcy cases filed in federal courts totaled 1,042,993 for the 12-month period ending September 30, 2008, up more than 30 percent when compared to the 801,269 filings in Fiscal Year 2007, according to statistics released today by the Administrative Office of the U.S. Courts. The September 2008 filings are the highest of any 12-month period since the 2006 implementation of the Bankruptcy Abuse Prevention and Consumer Protection Act of 2005, when there were 1,112,542 filings in the 12-month period ending September 30, 2006.

The federal Judiciary’s fiscal year is the 12-month period ending September 30. The bankruptcies reported today are for October 1, 2007 through September 30, 2008. More...

Siemens AG and Three Subsidiaries Plead Guilty to Foreign Corrupt Practices Act Violations and Agree to Pay $450 Million in Combined Criminal Fines

(USDOJ) WASHINGTON – Siemens Aktiengesellschaft (Siemens AG), a German corporation, and three of its subsidiaries today pleaded guilty to violations of and charges related to the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA), the Department of Justice and U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission announced.

At a hearing before U.S. District Judge Richard J. Leon in the District of Columbia, Siemens AG pleaded guilty to a two-count information charging criminal violations of the FCPA’s internal controls and books and records provisions. Siemens S.A.- Argentina (Siemens Argentina) pleaded guilty to a one-count information charging conspiracy to violate the books and records provisions of the FCPA. Siemens Bangladesh Limited (Siemens Bangladesh) and Siemens S.A. - Venezuela (Siemens Venezuela), each pleaded guilty to separate one-count informations charging conspiracy to violate the anti-bribery and books and records provisions of the FCPA. As part of the plea agreements, Siemens AG agreed to pay …

MAYOR BLOOMBERG, US TRANSPORTATION SECRETARY PETERS AND REPRESENTATIVES MALONEY, MICA, AND CASTLE ANNOUNCE NEXT STEP IN HIGH-SPEED RAIL

(NYCGOV) Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg, U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) Secretary Mary E. Peters and Representative John L. Mica of Florida, the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee Republican Leader, today announced that the DOT has for the first time requested private sector participation in the design, finance, construction, operation and maintenance of high-speed rail service between New York and Washington, DC and ten other corridors around the country. At the announcement, held at New York Penn Station, the Mayor, Secretary and Representative were joined by New York Representative Carolyn Maloney and Delaware Representative Mike Castle, the Passenger Rail Caucus Co-Chairman and former Delaware Governor.

"If the U.S. is to remain economically competitive, we must develop high-speed transportation service for our great cities, just as other countries are doing for theirs," said Mayor Bloomberg. "A high-speed train serving the Northeast Corridor is t…

GOVERNOR PATERSON ANNOUNCES $551 MILLION IN MEDICAID RECOVERIES FOR NEW YORK STATE

(NYSGOV) Governor David A. Paterson today joined New York State’s Medicaid Inspector General (MIG) James G. Sheehan in announcing that New York State has recovered more than double the requirements for recovery of improperly paid Medicaid funds. Under the Federal-State Health Reform Partnership (F-SHRP) – a federal program that sets requirements for Medicaid fraud and abuse recoveries – the federal government set and New York agreed to an ambitious recovery target of $215 million for federal fiscal year 2008. New York State recovered $551 million – more than doubling the Medicaid fund recovery targets set by F-SHRP. This number combines reported collections identified through the fraud and abuse efforts of a number of New York State agencies.

“Today’s announcement demonstrates that New York State is leading the way in monitoring and identifying Medicaid fraud, waste and abuse – all while maintaining the integrity of the program for those who truly need services,“ said Governor Paterson…

USCIS Revises Employment Eligibility Verification Form

(USCIS) WASHINGTON—U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services announced today that it has submitted to the Federal Register an interim final rule that will streamline the Employment Eligibility Verification (Form I-9) process.

The interim final rule narrows the list of acceptable identity documents and further specifies that expired documents are not considered acceptable forms of identification. An expansive document list makes it more difficult for employers to verify valid and acceptable forms and single out false documents compromising the effectiveness and security of the Form I-9 process. The changes included in the interim final rule will significantly improve the security of the employment eligibility verification process. More...

ATTORNEY GENERAL CUOMO ANNOUNCES THE RELEASE OF ASSURANCES OF DISCONTINUANCE IN AUCTION RATE SECURITIES SETTLEMENTS WITH CITIGROUP AND UBS

(NYOAG) NEW YORK, NY (December 11, 2008) - Attorney General Andrew M. Cuomo today announced Assurances of Discontinuance with UBS Financial Services, Inc. and UBS Securities LLC (“UBS”) and Citigroup Global Markets, Inc. (“Citigroup”) in the auction rate securities settlements reached earlier this year. The Assurances detail how liquidity will be provided to consumers who purchased auction-rate securities. These two Assurances of Discontinuance are the next step in the agreements reached in August with Citigroup and UBS.

Attorney General Cuomo earlier this year settled allegations that Citigroup and UBS made misrepresentations in their marketing and sale of auction rate securities. As a result of these settlements and those with other regulators, Citigroup will return over $7.3 billion and UBS will return over $22.7 billion to investors across New York State and the nation. More...

Sony BMG Music Settles Charges Its Music Fan Websites Violated the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act

(FTC) Sony BMG Music Entertainment (Sony Music) has agreed to pay $1 million as part of a settlement to resolve Federal Trade Commission charges that it violated the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA) and the Commission’s implementing Rule. The Commission’s complaint alleges that, through its music fan Web sites, Sony Music improperly collected, maintained and disclosed personal information from thousands of children under the age of 13, without their parents’ consent. The civil penalty to be paid by Sony Music matches the largest penalty ever in a COPPA case.

Sony BMG Music Entertainment, a subsidiary of Sony Corporation of America, represents hundreds of popular musicians and entertainers, including numerous artists popular with children and teenagers. The company operates over 1,000 Web sites for its musical artists and labels. Sony Music requires users to submit a broad range of personal information, together with date of birth, in order to register for these sites. O…

U.S. Department of Labor announces nearly $860,000 grant to assist Floridians affected by manufacturing industry layoffs

(USDOL) WASHINGTON — The U.S. Department of Labor today announced an $859,829 grant to assist approximately 464 Florida workers affected by manufacturing layoffs at 12 companies within Citrus, Levy and Marion counties.

"Across a variety of sectors, manufacturing in this three-county area has been hit hard in recent months," said Deputy Assistant Secretary of Labor for Employment and Training Brent R. Orrell. "This grant will aid in retraining affected workers, and help them find new and challenging work in other fields." More...

Former New York State Supreme Court Justice Indicted for Attempted Extortion and Bribery

(USDOJ) WASHINGTON – A former Supreme Court Justice of the Third Judicial Circuit of the State of New York was charged today with attempted extortion and federal program bribery, Acting Assistant Attorney General Matthew Friedrich of the Criminal Division announced. Thomas J. Spargo, 65 was charged in an indictment returned today by a federal grand jury in the Northern District of New York.

According to the indictment, while Spargo was a state Supreme Court Justice in 2003, he allegedly solicited $10,000 from an Ulster County, N.Y., attorney who had cases pending before the judge. The indictment further charges that Spargo solicited the money by causing the attorney to fear that Spargo would use his official acts and influence to harm the attorney if he was not paid and, conversely, to help the attorney if he was paid. More...

Court Halts Bogus Computer Scans

(FTC) - At the request of the Federal Trade Commission, a U.S. district court has issued a temporary halt to a massive “scareware” scheme, which falsely claimed that scans had detected viruses, spyware, and illegal pornography on consumers’ computers. According to the FTC, the scheme has tricked more than one million consumers into buying computer security products such as WinFixer, WinAntivirus, DriveCleaner, ErrorSafe, and XP Antivirus. The court also froze the assets of those responsible for the scheme, to preserve the possibility of providing consumers with monetary redress.

According to the FTC’s complaint, the defendants used an elaborate ruse that duped Internet advertising networks and popular Web sites into carrying their advertisements. The defendants falsely claimed that they were placing Internet advertisements on behalf of legitimate companies and organizations. But due to hidden programming code that the defendants inserted into the advertisements, consumers who visited W…

HUD, PARTNERS BREAK GROUND AT ST. BERNARD SITE TO BRING NEW MIXED-INCOME COMMUNITY TO NEW ORLEANS

(HUD) NEW ORLEANS - U.S. Housing and Urban Development Secretary Steve Preston joined General Douglas O'Dell, Mayor Ray Nagin and other partners today to break ground at the former St. Bernard public housing site and make way for Columbia Citi Residences at Bayou District, a new mixed-income community. This historic groundbreaking marks the start of HUD's ambitious effort to redevelop four of New Orleans' large public housing developments that suffered from massive flooding after Hurricane Katrina in 2005.

"This groundbreaking builds on a commitment HUD made to create communities that are inclusive, better and safer than what families had before," said Preston. "We promised you new housing, a new community, and a better life. This groundbreaking marks the start of fulfilling that promise." More...

L-3 Communications Corp. Pays U.S. $4 Million to Settle Overbilling Allegations on Iraq War Contract

WASHINGTON - L-3 Vertex Aerospace, a subsidiary of L-3 Communications Corp., has paid the U.S. $4 million to settle allegations that the company submitted false and inflated claims to the Army for hours worked by the firm’s employees on a contract supporting military operations by the United States in Iraq, the Justice Department announced today.

L-3 Vertex Aerospace, based in Madison, Miss., has an ongoing contract with the U.S. Army to provide helicopter maintenance services at Camp Taji, Iraq. The settlement announced today resolves allegations that L-3 submitted false time records and inflated claims for hours worked by company employees at Camp Taji, during periods from March 2004 through August 2005. More...

ATTORNEY GENERAL CUOMO ANNOUNCES ARRESTS AND CONVICTION OF FOUR WESTERN NEW YORK NURSING HOME EMPLOYEES FOR ABUSING PATIENTS

BUFFALO, N.Y (December 8, 2008) – Attorney General Andrew M. Cuomo today announced the arrests of three Western New York nursing home employees and the conviction of a fourth for abusing elderly and ill patients.

According to court records, the acts of abuse include physically attacking and using racial slurs against an 86-year-old Alzheimer’s patient, slapping a 100-year-old patient in the face, and tying an elderly patient with dementia to a chair for two consecutive nights. The arrests and conviction stem from Attorney General Cuomo’s statewide investigations into abuse and neglect in institutional care settings. More...

Marketers of Mystery Shopper Scam Settle with FTC; Agree to Pay $850,000

An operation that lured consumers with promises that they could earn big money as trained and certified “mystery shoppers ” has agreed to pay $850,000 to settle charges of deceptive marketing and contempt.

Mystery shoppers are paid to shop or dine out and then provide reports about the experience. In March 2007, the Federal Trade Commission charged eight defendants – the three companies Mystery Shop Link, LLC; Tangent Group, LLC; Harp Marketing Services, Inc.; and five individuals – with violating the FTC Act in connection with a nationwide mystery shopping employment scam. More...

Puerto Rico Political Consultant Pleads Guilty to Money Laundering Conspiracy

WASHINGTON – Alberto Goachet, 67, a political consultant and aide to Puerto Rico Sen. Jorge De Castro Font, pleaded guilty today to participating in a conspiracy to launder illegal campaign contributions and other payments, Acting Assistant Attorney General Matthew Friedrich of the Criminal Division and U.S. Attorney for the District of Puerto Rico Rosa Emilia Rodríguez-Vélez announced.

Goachet pleaded guilty before U.S. District Judge Francisco Augusto Besosa in the District of Puerto Rico to a one-count information that charged him with conspiring with De Castro Font and others to launder cash provided by a Puerto Rico businessman to De Castro Font. As part of the plea agreement, Goachet admitted that he and others laundered the money through the use of fake invoices purporting to reflect legitimate payments to a political consulting firm owned by Goachet. Goachet also admitted in the agreement that the false invoices were meant to conceal the businessman’s illegal payments to De Cas…

ATTORNEY GENERAL CUOMO REACHES $1.3 MILLION SETTLEMENT WITH RITE AID OVER THE SALE OF EXPIRED PRODUCTS ACROSS NEW YORK STATE

NEW YORK, NY (December 4, 2008) – Attorney General Andrew M. Cuomo today announced that his office has reached a $1.3 million settlement with the national retail pharmacy chain Rite Aid to end its sale of expired products – including over-the-counter drugs, baby formula, milk, and eggs – at stores across New York State.

The agreement with Rite Aid was the result of the Attorney General’s statewide, undercover investigation earlier this year of all major drug store chains in New York State. Cuomo’s probe uncovered sales of expired products in over 122 Rite Aid stores and 148 CVS stores in more than 41 New York counties. The Attorney General announced the findings of his office’s investigation in June and issued a public health advisory at that time. Subsequent inspections by the Attorney General at both Rite Aid and CVS stores revealed that both stores were continuing to sell expired products even after the Attorney General’s advisory. More...

LA WEIGHT LOSS SETTLES NATIONWIDE SEX DISCRIMINATION LAWSUIT WITH EEOC

BALTIMORE – The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) announced that it has resolved its pattern or practice sex discrimination lawsuit against LA Weight Loss Centers, Inc., (renamed Pure Weight Loss, Inc., in early 2007), for $20 million and other significant relief.

According to the EEOC’s suit (WDQ-02-CV-648), filed in the U.S. District Court for the District of Maryland, Pure Weight Loss had a nationwide policy of not hiring qualified males into the positions of counselor/sales, medical assistants, assistant managers, center managers, area supervisors, trainers, and other field positions. Former Area Trainer Kathy Koch was disciplined and fired in retaliation for complaining about the company’s policy of not hiring men and for interviewing male candidates, the EEOC also alleged. More...

New Jersey-based Medquist Pays U.S. $6.6 Million to Resolve False Claims Act Allegations

WASHINGTON -- Medical transcription service provider MedQuist Inc. has paid the United States $6.6 million to resolve allegations under the False Claims Act that it overbilled federal government clients, the Justice Department announced today. From 1998 onward, MedQuist provided medical transcription services to several federal government clients, including the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), the Department of Defense (DOD) and the Public Health Service (PHS), part of the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS).

The government alleged that, from approximately 1998 through 2004, the Mount Laurel, N.J., company knowingly overbilled VA, DOD and PHS for medical transcription services. Certain federal contracts called for MedQuist to bill according to a transcription industry billing standard called the "AAMT line." Other contracts at issue imposed slightly different billing standards. More...

Owners Of Popular Saigon Grill Restaurants Allegedly Maintained Multiple Sets Of Books and Filed Fraudulent Business Records to Cheat the State’s Unem

NEW YORK, N.Y. (December 3, 2008) - Attorney General Andrew M. Cuomo today announced the arrest of the owners of the popular Saigon Grill restaurants in New York City for allegedly failing to pay its workers legal wages, taking illegal kickbacks from workers, cheating the state unemployment insurance fund, and for creating fraudulent business records to cover up their illegal actions.

Simon Nget a.k.a. Chang S. Nget, and his wife, Michelle Lu Nget a.k.a. Pei Ying Nget, are accused of numerous criminal charges based on their business practices at the Saigon Grill restaurants in Manhattan, located at 620 Amsterdam Avenue on the Upper West Side and 91 University Place in Greenwich Village, and formerly located at 1700 Second Avenue on the Upper East Side. The Ngets have owned and operated the popular restaurants since 1996. More...

Justice Department Reaches Agreement in Minority-Vote Dilution Lawsuit in Euclid, Ohio

WASHINGTON - The Department of Justice today announced that it has reached an agreement as to liability in a lawsuit filed under Section 2 of the Voting Rights Act against the Euclid City School District Board of Education in Euclid, Ohio. The lawsuit challenges the method of electing members of the Euclid City School District’s governing body, alleging that it violates the rights of African-American voters to elect candidates of their choice.

"We are pleased that the school board’s willingness to concede liability in this case spares the Department and the citizens of Euclid the necessity of protracted, costly and potentially divisive litigation," said Grace Chung Becker, Acting Assistant Attorney General for Civil Rights. "This concession immediately places before the court the task of determining a fair remedial plan that provides African-American voters in Euclid the opportunity to elect candidates of their choice to the school board." More...

FORMER SCHENECTADY POLICE CHIEF GREG KACZMAREK CONVICTED ON FELONY DRUG DISTRIBUTION CHARGES

ALBANY, N.Y. (December 2, 2008) – Attorney General Andrew M. Cuomo today announced the convictions of former Schenectady Police Chief Gregory Kaczmarek and his wife for taking part in a highly organized narcotics distribution organization that operated in the Capital District and was supplied from Long Island.

Gregory Kaczmarek, 56, and his wife Lisa Kaczmarek, 48, both of Roma Street in Schenectady, pleaded guilty today before Schenectady County Court Judge Karen Drago. The Kaczmareks were indicted in September for their participation in a cocaine and marijuana drug distribution ring run by Kerry “Slim” Kirkem, 40, of VanVranken Ave. in Schenectady and Guideboard Road in Waterford. More...

Dedham, Mass., temp placement company agrees to pay 973 employees more than $1.8 million in back wages to resolve U.S. Labor Department lawsuit

BOSTON — 888 Consulting Group Inc., a Dedham, Mass., temporary employee placement company doing business as TAC Worldwide, has agreed to pay 973 employees across the country a total of $1,866,943 in overtime back wages to resolve a lawsuit filed by the U.S. Department of Labor alleging violations of the federal Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA).

"We are very pleased that the department has succeeded in securing more than $1.8 million in back wages for these workers who were not properly paid for overtime," said Secretary of Labor Elaine L. Chao. More...

British Marine Hose Manufacturer Agrees to Plead Guilty and Pay $4.5 Million for Participating in Worldwide Bid-Rigging Conspiracy

WASHINGTON — A British marine hose manufacturer has agreed to plead guilty and pay $4.54 million in criminal fines for participating in a conspiracy to rig bids, fix prices and allocate market shares of marine hose sold in the United States and elsewhere, the Department of Justice announced today.

A one-count felony charge was filed today in U.S. District Court in Fort Lauderdale, Fla., against Dunlop Oil & Marine Ltd. (Dunlop), a manufacturer of marine hose located in Grimsby, England. Under the terms of the plea agreement, which is subject to court approval, Dunlop has agreed to pay a criminal fine of $4.54 million and to cooperate fully in the Department’s ongoing antitrust investigation. Dunlop is the second corporation to be charged in the investigation. More...