Dy’er Sez: Wow, wow, wow. Considering that this story is just breaking, there’s so much more to come out about this situation. I wonder if the money was going to simply line some greedy pockets, or if the destination of the ill gotten gains ended up in more, um, organized hands?
Story from CNN:
Mayors, rabbis arrested in corruption probe
NEWARK, New Jersey (CNN) — The New Jersey officials and their associates charged in a federal probe of public corruption exchanged hundreds of thousands of dollars in bribes in parking lots, restaurants, boiler rooms and bathrooms, an acting U.S. attorney said Thursday.
The investigation netted 44 defendants — 29 on corruption charges and 15 for alleged money laundering, acting U.S. Attorney Ralph Marra Jr. said at a news conference.
Defendants were to begin appearing Thursday afternoon in U.S. District Court in Newark.
Among the 15 are five rabbis, including the national leader of the Syrian Jewish community. They are alleged to have laundered more than $3 million in a “high-volume, international money-laundering conspiracy,” Marra said. Their alleged dealings stretched to Israel and Switzerland.
“These complaints paint a disgraceful picture of religious leaders heading money-laundering crews, acting as crime bosses. They used purported charities … as vehicles for laundering millions of dollars in illicit funds,” Marra said.
The rabbis named in the criminal complaints are accused of setting up charitable tax-exempt organizations at their synagogues that they used to launder money.