Showing posts from August, 2012

Plastic Surgeon Says 'Mob Wife' Defamed Him


BROOKLYN (CN) - A plastic surgeon claims in court that a star of the VH1 TV show "Mob Wives" defamed him by staging a fake incident in a recovery room for cameras taping her recovery from a full body lift.

United States Reaches Lending Discrimination Settlement With GFI Mortgage Bankers Inc.

Preet Bharara, the United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York, Thomas E. Perez, the Assistant Attorney General for the Department of Justice’s Civil Rights Division, and John Trasviña, Assistant Secretary for Fair Housing and Equal Opportunity at the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (“HUD”), announced today that GFI Mortgage Bankers Inc., a large independent home mortgage firm that concentrates on the New York, New Jersey, and Florida markets, will pay $3.555 million to resolve a lending discrimination lawsuit filed by the Department of Justice and the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York.

Two Leaders of Baltimore Drug Ring Exiled to 45 Years in Prison

BALTIMORE—U.S. District Judge William D. Quarles, Jr. sentenced Wade Coats, age 47, of Baltimore, and Jose Cavazos, age 44, of Midlothian, Texas, today each to 45 years in prison followed by five years of supervised release for conspiracy to distribute five kilograms or more of cocaine. Coats was also sentenced for possessing a firearm in furtherance of a drug trafficking crime.

Two Investment Advisers Convicted in California of High-Yield Investment Fraud

WASHINGTON—William J. Ferry, a former stock broker and investment adviser, and Dennis J. Clinton, a former real estate investment manager, were found guilty by a federal jury in Santa Ana, California today for their roles in a conspiracy to defraud a wealthy investor of $1 billion in a high-yield investment fraud scheme, announced Assistant Attorney General Lanny A. Breuer of the Justice Department’s Criminal Division. The investor was, in reality, part of an undercover FBI team that posed as wealthy investors and investment managers in an effort to stop fraudsters before they actually harmed victims.

Supplier to cable shopping network faces nearly $2 million in fines and restitution

ANCHORAGE, Alaska – A Hong Kong-based jewelry exporter pleaded guilty Friday to customs fraud charges and faces nearly $2 million in fines and restitution in a scheme discovered by U.S. Customs and Border Protection's (CBP) Regulatory Audit Unit and investigated by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement's (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI).

EEOC Obtains $2.75 Million from WRS Compass for Victims of Race Harassment at Clean-Up Site

CHICAGO - A Tampa-based environmental clean-up company has agreed to pay $2.75 million and enter into a three-year nationwide consent decree to resolve a race discrimination case brought the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), the agency announced today.

Home Care Agency Fired Three Employees for Sexual Harassment Complaints, Federal Agency Charges

ST. LOUIS – Help at Home, Inc., a company that provides home health care to elderly and disabled individuals in their homes, violated federal law by allowing the company’s regional director to sexually harass employees, the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) charged in a discrimination lawsuit filed today. The company also unlawfully fired the victims and their supervisor for complaining, the EEOC said.

John Ioannou Charged in 19-Count Indictment With Embezzling Settlement Funds

Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus R. Vance, Jr., today announced the indictment of JOHN IOANNOU, 57, an attorney,for embezzling hundreds of thousands of dollars from his clients since at least 2007 and attempting to coerce others to drop complaints they had filed against him with the Departmental Disciplinary Committee of the Appellate Division, First Department (“DDC”). The defendant has been indicted in New York State Supreme Court on charges of Grand Larceny in the Second and Third Degrees, Forgery in the Second Degree, Criminal Possession of a Forged Instrument in Second Degree, Falsifying Business Records, and related charges.[1]

Student Sues School After Years of Bullying


KANSAS CITY, Kan. (CN) - A public school district failed for years to protect a student from bullying and sexual assaults from students who thought he was gay, the student claims in Federal Court.

Two Loan Officers Sentenced In Manhattan Federal Court For Participating In A $9 Million Mortgage Fraud Scheme

Frederick Warren and Denise Parks, two loan officers, were sentenced in Manhattan federal court for their roles in a $9 million mortgage fraud scheme in which 12 people were originally charged and 11 have pled guilty.

Mother and Son Admit $14 Million Credit Union Fraud

Scott A. Lonzinski, 32, of Clifford Township, Susquehanna County, Pennsylvania, and his mother, Laura Conarton, 46, of Great Bend, Susquehanna County, Pennsylvania, pled guilty today in United States District Court to the felony crime of bank fraud.

Wal-Mart Settles EEOC Lawsuit for $50,000

DALLAS — Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. and Wal-Mart Stores East, L.P. will pay $50,000 in back pay and damages in settlement of a disability discrimination lawsuit filed by the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC). The EEOC had charged that a Carlsbad, N.M., Walmart store unlawfully fired a part-time sales clerk because of her cerebral palsy.

40-Count Superseding Indictment Filed in Connection With “Operation Green Venom,” A Multi-Agency Law Enforcement Investigation

Raymond W. Kelly, the Police Commissioner of the City of New York (“NYPD”), announced today the unsealing of a 40-count Racketeering Influenced Corrupt Organizations Indictment (the “RICO Indictment”) charging nine individuals with participating in the “Rodriguez Enterprise,” a massive racketeering organization whose members allegedly sold large quantities of marijuana; engaged in murders and other violent acts; transported and laundered millions of dollars; obstructed justice and committed perjury; and engaged in firearms offenses.

Whitman Convicted on Four Counts for Trading on Marvell, Polycom, and Google Inside Information, Earning His Firm More Than $900,000 in Illegal Profits

DOUG WHITMAN, a portfolio manager at Whitman Capital, LLC, was found guilty today by a jury in Manhattan federal court of conspiracy and securities fraud crimes stemming from his involvement in two insider trading schemes that earned his firm more than $900,000 in illegal profits.

Massachusetts Man Pleads Guilty In Manhattan Federal Court For Failing To Report Over $5 Million Hidden In Swiss Bank Accounts To The IRS

JACQUES WAJSFELNER pled guilty today in Manhattan federal court to willfully failing to file Reports of Foreign Bank and Financial Accounts (“FBARs”) with the IRS for Swiss bank accounts that he maintained and controlled. WAJSFELNER used the services of Beda Singenberger, a Swiss financial adviser, who was charged in July 2011 for allegedly helping U.S. taxpayers hide more than $184 million at various Swiss banks.


A federal jury in Brooklyn today returned guilty verdicts against Pino Baldassarre, the former President of Dolphin Digital Media, Inc. (“Dolphin”) and Robert Mouallem, a stockbroker, on conspiracy, securities fraud and commercial bribery charges. These charges arose from the defendants’ scheme to sell their shares of Dolphin at inflated prices by bribing stockbrokers.

U.S. Government Seizes $150 Million in Connection with Hizballah-Related Money Laundering Scheme

The United States has seized $150 million in connection with a civil money laundering and forfeiture complaint filed in December 2011 alleging a massive, international scheme in which entities linked to Hizballah, including the now-defunct Lebanese Canadian Bank (LCB), used the U.S. financial system to launder narcotics trafficking and other criminal proceeds through West Africa and back into Lebanon, announced Preet Bharara, U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York, and Michele M. Leonhart, the Administrator of the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA).


Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus R. Vance, Jr., announced the arraignment of two New York City Transit (NYCT) subway maintenance supervisors and the indictment of eight NYCT subway signal maintainers for falsifying MTA records to reflect inspections of equipment that were never completed.

Police Whistleblower Sues Nation's Capital


WASHINGTON (CN) - A former police commander claims in court that he was demoted after he tipped the D.C. City Council to the Police Department's practice of providing escorts to celebrities, including Charlie Sheen.

SEC Charges College Football Hall of Fame Coach in $80 Million Ponzi Scheme

Washington, D.C., Aug. 16, 2012 – The Securities and Exchange Commission today announced fraud charges against a former college football coach who teamed with an Ohio man to conduct an $80 million Ponzi scheme that included other college coaches and former players among its victims.

Long Island Medical Supplier Convicted of $10.7 Million Medicare Fraud

A federal jury in Central Islip today convicted the owner of a Long Island medical supply company of a $10.7 million Medicare fraud and wrongful disclosure of private patient information.

Second Former Georgia Corrections Officer Pleads Guilty to Conspiring with Other Officers to Assault and Injure Inmates

WASHINGTON—Darren Douglass-Griffin, 35, a former member of the Correctional Emergency Response Team (CERT) at Macon State Prison (MSP) in Oglethorpe, Georgia, pleaded guilty to a two-count bill of information charging him with conspiracy to violate the civil rights of inmates and falsification of records in a federal investigation, the Justice Department and the U.S. Attorney for the Middle District of Georgia announced today.

Manhattan U.S. Attorney and FBI Assistant Director in Charge Announce Four Arrests in 2008 Staged Robbery

Preet Bharara, the United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York; and Janice Fedarcyk, the Assistant Director in Charge of the New York Field Office of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), announced today that Janell Nelson, formerly a Dunbar Armored car courier, and three others were charged in connection with staging a September 2008 robbery of Nelson as she was preparing to deliver money to an M&T Bank branch in New York, New York.

Authorities Offer $50,000 Reward in Manassas Cold Case

The Federal Bureau of Investigation, Virginia State Police, and Manassas City Police Department announced a $50,000 reward today for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the individual or individuals responsible for the murder of Virginia State Trooper Johnny Rush Bowman in August 1984.

SEC Charges Wells Fargo for Selling Complex Investments Without Disclosing Risks

Washington, D.C., Aug. 14, 2012 – The Securities and Exchange Commission today charged Wells Fargo’s brokerage firm and a former vice president for selling investments tied to mortgage-backed securities without fully understanding their complexity or disclosing the risks to investors.

Judge Sorts Out TV-Worthy Nepotism Suit


MANHATTAN (CN) - In a case he called "worthy of a made-for-television movie," a federal judge refused to immediately punish a Mercedes dealership for firing the mourning lover of its late executive, or find that her employment constituted a theft of company resources.


Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus R. Vance, Jr., today announced the indictment of KHALID RAHMAN, 20, on charges of Murder in the Second Degree, Criminal Possession of a Weapon in the Second Degree, and Reckless Endangerment in the First Degree.[1] In the early morning hours of July 5, 2012, the defendant is charged with firing a shot that killed Matt Shaw, 21, a recent college graduate, near the AK Houses in East Harlem.

Long Island Railroad Retiree Pleads Guilty in Connection with Massive Disability Fraud Scheme

Preet Bharara, the United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York, announced today that Gary Satin, a former electrician with the Long Island Railroad (LIRR), pled guilty to federal charges in connection with his participation in a massive fraud scheme in which LIRR workers claimed to be disabled upon early retirement so that they could receive disability benefits to which they were not entitled. Satin also pled guilty today to perjury for making false statements to the grand jury that was hearing evidence in this case. Satin pled guilty before U.S. Magistrate Judge Henry Pitman.

Former New York City Employee Sentenced In Manhattan Federal Court For Participating In Bribery Scheme

Preet Bharara, the United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York, announced that CAROLYN EASON, a former New York City employee, was sentenced in Manhattan federal court to two years of probation for her role in a bribery scheme involving a ring of day care centers. EASON pled guilty in March 2011 to receiving bribes in exchange for taking official action to benefit day care centers in Brooklyn, New York, and cooperated with the Government’s investigation. U.S. District Judge Laura Taylor Swain imposed today’s sentence.

Three Indicted in $5 Million Fraud Scheme

Two of three men who allegedly defrauded an individual in a funds leasing scheme have been arrested on an indictment charging them with conspiracy and wire fraud. Thomas Bannon, the president of Overseas Investors LLC (“Overseas”); Robert Bardey, Esq., an attorney; and Theodore Sweeten, the president of Symtech International Inc. (“Symtech”), are charged in an 11-count indictment in federal court in Brooklyn.

Westchester Tests Judge's Patience on Fair Housing


MANHATTAN (CN) - Lawyers for New York's wealthy Westchester County have one week to outline a plan legislating fair housing for minority residents, a federal judge ruled.


Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus R. Vance, Jr., announced the conviction of MARQUIS PHILLIPS, 36, for robbing a woman in an elevator before dragging her into stairwells throughout her East Harlem apartment building and sexually assaulting her.

Manhattan U.S. Attorney Announces Charges Against Livery Fleet Owner In $10 Million Insurance Fraud Scheme

Preet Bharara, the United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York and Ronald J. Verrochio, the Inspector-in-Charge of the New York Office of the U.S. Postal Inspection Service (“USPIS”), announced today the unsealing of an Indictment charging SCOTT SANDERS, an owner of fleets of commercial vehicles, with participating in a nine-year automobile insurance fraud scheme to obtain substantially lower premiums for commercial vehicles he owned and controlled.

FTC Approves Final Settlement With Facebook

Facebook Must Obtain Consumers' Consent Before Sharing Their Information Beyond Established Privacy Settings

Following a public comment period, the FTC has accepted as final a settlement with Facebook resolving charges that Facebook deceived consumers by telling them they could keep their information on Facebook private, and then repeatedly allowing it to be shared and made public.

USPTO to Hold Texas Regional Inventors Conference in Austin, September 14-15

Washington—The U.S. Department of Commerce’s United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) will hold the Texas Regional Independent Inventors Conference on September 14-15, 2012 in the Thompson Conference Center located on the campus of the University of Texas at Austin.

Naser Jason Abdo Sentenced to Life in Federal Prison in Connection with Killeen Bomb Plot

Naser Jason Abdo, age 22, will spend the rest of his life in federal prison for plotting to kill American soldiers and others near Fort Hood, Texas, announced Assistant Attorney General for National Security Lisa Monaco, United States Attorney Robert Pitman, Federal Bureau of Investigation Special Agent in Charge Armando Fernandez, and Killeen Police Chief Dennis M. Baldwin.

SEC Charges Mutual Fund Adviser With Failing to Turn Over Records to SEC Examiners

Washington, D.C., Aug. 10, 2012 – The Securities and Exchange Commission today charged a Florida-based investment manager and his firm for failing to provide SEC examiners with records of a mutual fund advisory business that invested in NASCAR-related stocks.

Joseph Trischitta a former New York City Police Department Officer, was sentenced today to 40 months in prison

JOSEPH TRISCHITTA, a former New York City Police Department (“NYPD”) Officer, was sentenced today to 40 months in prison for engaging in a scheme involving the illegal interstate transport of firearms and stolen goods. TRISCHITTA was sentenced in Manhattan federal court by U.S. District Judge William H. Pauley III.

Foreign National Extradited from Nigeria Admits He Used Stolen Identities to Raid Retirement Accounts

NEWARK—A former Newark resident who earlier this year was extradited from Nigeria today admitted his role in a scheme to use stolen identities to loot retirement accounts, U.S. Attorney Paul J. Fishman announced.

Former Bank President Sentenced to 12 Years in Federal Prison for Bank Fraud Conspiracy and Perjury

ATLANTA—Mark A. Conner, the former President of FirstCity Bank of Stockbridge who, while serving as a top officer of FirstCity Bank of Stockbridge, Georgia, was part of a multi-million-dollar conspiracy to defraud the bank, and who hid assets in the Cayman Islands and lied about it in his personal bankruptcy case, was sentenced today by United States District Judge Steve C. Jones.


Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus R. Vance, Jr., today announced the arrest and arraignment of SERGEY ALEYNIKOV, 42, on a felony complaint charging him with accessing and duplicating a complex proprietary and highly confidential computer source code owned by Goldman Sachs, a New York-based financial institution.

Monitor Named To Oversee Settlement With Science Applications International In Connection With CityTime Fraud

Preet Bharara, the United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York announced that Michael Eberhardt of Contractor Integrity Solutions, LLC, has been selected to serve as the independent monitor who will oversee Science Applications International Corporation (“SAIC”) to ensure that it complies with the terms of the deferred prosecution agreement (“DPA”) into which the company entered with the Government as the result of its conduct on the CityTime payroll project.


Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus R. Vance, Jr., today announced the sentencing of KEVIN CLOR, 34, to two-and-two-thirds-to-eight years in prison for stealing approximately $184,000 from the New York State Thruway Employees Local 72 (the “Union”).

Alleged International Narcotics Trafficker Extradited from Colombia on Cocaine Importation Charges

Preet Bharara, United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York (SDNY); Wifredo A. Ferrer, United States Attorney for the Southern District of Florida (SDFL); Mark R. Trouville, Special Agent in Charge, U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), Miami Field Division; Brian Crowell, Special Agent in Charge of the New Jersey Division of the DEA; and Janice K. Fedarcyk, Assistant Director in Charge of the New York Office of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), today announced the extradition of Dolly de Jesus Cifuentes-Villa from Colombia to the United States

Employment Background Screening Company to Pay $2.6 Million Penalty for Multiple Violations of the Fair Credit Reporting Act

FTC Charges HireRight Solutions Incorrectly Listed Criminal Convictions on Reports of Some Consumers

An employment background screening company that provides consumer reports to companies nationwide will pay $2.6 million to settle Federal Trade Commission charges that it violated the Fair Credit Reporting Act by failing to use reasonable procedures to assure the maximum possible accuracy of information it provided, failing to give consumers copies of their reports, and failing to reinvestigate consumer disputes, as required by law.

SEC Charges Pfizer with FCPA Violations

Washington, D.C., Aug. 7, 2012 – The Securities and Exchange Commission today charged Pfizer Inc. with violating the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) when its subsidiaries bribed doctors and other health care professionals employed by foreign governments in order to win business.


Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus R. Vance, Jr., today announced the convictions of GEORGE CASTRO, 50, WALTER STEPHENS, JR, 66, and JEREMY DIEUDONNE, 47, for defrauding Columbia University out of approximately $5.7 million and transferring the funds into accounts for their own use. JOSEPH PINERAS, 35, was found guilty of fraud through his access to Columbia’s vendor payment system.

Fremont Toyota Pays $400,000 to Settle EEOC’s Harassment and Retaliation Lawsuit

SAN FRANCISCO — Fremont, Calif., car dealership Fremont Toyota agreed to pay $400,000 and implement training for the dealership’s management staff to settle a federal discrimination lawsuit filed by the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), the agency announced today.


Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus R. Vance, Jr., today announced the sentencing of GREG POIRIER, 39, to 25 years in prison and 20 years post-release supervision for a sexually motivated attack on a 28-year-old woman in April 2008 as she was entering her apartment.