Stop me if you’ve heard this one before…
A mayor and some rabbis walk into a bar. They launder lots of money on an international scale while they’re there, so they are arrested. That’s exactly what happened to Peter Cammarano and the rabbis arrested in a huge money laundering scheme that the New York Daily News calls a “sweeping” probe. If they needed money, there are plenty of honest quick cash to be had from cheap loans. But they chose the path that isn’t kosher with the laws of the land.
Here’s the skinny
Dozens of individuals, including Hoboken Mayor Peter Cammarano, at least five rabbis and numerous other “top-ranking New Jersey politicians and dozens of others in the Garden State and Brooklyn” were taken in by the busload by law enforcement. They are alleged to be involved in a money laundering network of international proportions. In total 44 people were charged during raids against the operation, which is believe to operate between Deal, New Jersey, Brooklyn, New York and somewhere in Israel.
The money went through charities controlled by the rabbis
According to AP reports, “Peter Cammarano, Secaucus, New Jersey Mayor Denis Elwell, Jersey City Deputy Mayor Leona Baldini, Jersey City Council President Mariano Vega and two state assemblymen” were rounded up by the FBI and are headed for U.S. District Court.
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What makes this all the more stunning is that Peter Cammarano had only been in office for three weeks. He is being charged with accepting $25,000 in bribes from an undercover operative. More big money that is documented as having changed hands is $15,000 in bribes for building approvals to Assemblyman L. Harvey Smith and $10,000 to Assemblyman Daniel Van Pelt.
Mmmmm… organ meat
Numerous area rabbis have been charged with washing the gains of criminal activities through the guise of donation to their own charities. That may be shocking, but there’s someone else who stands out. The AP points to Levy Rosenbaum, a Brooklynite who has apparently been trafficking in human organs for 10 years. Rosenbaum reportedly convinced the sick to donate their kidneys for $10,000. After obtaining them, he’d quickly sell them for $160,000 each to those in need, say prosecutors.
Oh, there’s a gubernatorial race going on there, too
Incumbent Democratic Governor Jon Corzine is battling against Republican Chris Christie. How happy are they that this scandal has nothing to do with them (so far as we know)? I still want to know why the rabbis were so short of cash that they felt they had to resort to such illegal means of filling the temple. What would dear old Solomon say? Likely, he’d say that they should take the quick cash from cheap loans and cut it right in half. The one who protests the loudest would be forced to be the whipping boy for the members of the charity who believed their operation was honest.
Hey, I wonder if this can be traced back to Madoff? He’s an easy target. Your budget, however, doesn’t have to be. If you need quick cash, apply now below. Solomon is watching you…