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Monday, July 30, 2012

Seabrook is Finally Convicted

The Bronx continues to be the most prolific borough when it comes to corruption. Former City Councilman Larry Seabrook (aka "Cash and Carry Larry") has finally been convicted of stealing from taxpayers.  Seabrook has been known to be on the take for decades and managed to get a hung jury in his last trial, but justice finally caught up to him. Seabrook is the second councilman in three years to be convited on corruption charges arising from the misuse of discretionary member-item funds. Back in 2009, former Councilman Miguel Martinez was sentenced to five years in prison for siphoning more than $100,000.  Here is an editorial from the Daily News once again calling for the elimination of member-items. 

25 comments:

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    1. Wow ... And to think that Councilman Seabrook was actually an adjunct associate professor at John Jay College of Criminal Justice.

      What class did he teach? . . . Corruption 101?

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    2. "That's all Folks!"

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  2. I agree with the Daily News.

    Member-item grants (the legislative "earmarks" or "pork" that lawmakers dole out to favored constituent groups) should be eliminated not just on the municipal level, but also on the federal and state levels.

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    1. So true. These member grants mean that the pols just milk it for all it's worth. Abolishing the grants would clean up the system.

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  3. Larry Seabrook is a typical creature of New York's legislative system. He is a former ASSEMBLYMAN and STATE SENATOR, and had served as a CITY COUNCILMAN since 2002.

    With these guys, it's always the money that's their downfall ... taxpayer money ... the member items.

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    1. it just shows how reallly stupid these pols are

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    2. How can anyone call this nonsense justice? It should be up to the voters, not the courts.

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    3. shhhhh no tears, only dreams now...

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  4. Speaking of taxpayer money, anyone want to talk about all that pork the Christian Community Association can thank Ruben Diaz Sr & Jr for?

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    1. The Daily News reported on this 4 years ago. Here is the article:


      New York Daily News, Thursday, June 5th 2008

      F.B.I. PROBING DIAZ DUO OVER MILLIONS

      By Robert Gearty, Daily News Staff Writer

      The FBI is investigating a taxpayer-funded home attendant program largely funded by a Bronx state senator and his assemblyman son, the Daily News has learned.
      Christian Community in Action is part of a sweeping federal probe of Sen. Ruben Diaz and Assemblyman Ruben Diaz Jr.
      Sen. Diaz founded the organization and is a former administrator. His wife, Leslie, is the group's director of field operations and had a $59,056 annual salary as of April 2007. Ruben Diaz Jr. worked there as a teen.
      Three members of Sen. Diaz's staff are members of the group's board of directors.
      Last year, the nonprofit received a grand jury subpoena from the public corruption unit of Manhattan U.S. Attorney Michael Garcia, which was probing fraud and money laundering.
      A month later, the FBI served a subpoena on the Bronx office of the city Board of Elections and seized documents about the Diazes, a development first reported by The News.
      Sen. Diaz, a Pentecostal minister, admitted Christian Community in Action was subpoenaed but said it was "two years ago."
      "As far as I know, nothing happened," he said, refusing to answer questions and hanging up.
      His son is a candidate for Bronx borough president and part of a group of rebel lawmakers seeking to unseat Bronx Democratic Party leader Jose Rivera.
      Last year, Ruben Diaz Jr. spent $25,000 in campaign funds on Manhattan law firm Kobre & Kim, which often defends government targets in criminal cases.
      The assemblyman did not return calls for comment.
      The group's parent, Christian Community Benevolent Association, has received more than $1.5 million in pork barrel spending from the Diazes from 2003 to 2007. The association is not on a list of pork projects designated for funding this year.
      Christian Community in Action also has a $26 million contract with the city to provide home health care to 1,000 seniors.
      Last year, Christian Community in Action told the mayor's office it was being investigated.
      In a vendor questionnaire obtained by The News, the nonprofit said the investigation began in early 2007 and was "ongoing," but contended it did not know what probers were trying to find.
      Attached to the document was a copy of the subpoena issued by a grand jury in Manhattan Federal Court which demanded names, addresses, salaries and Social Security numbers of all current and former employes, consultants, board members, benefactors and contractors back to 1999. It also demanded all documents relating to the group's funding since 1999.
      A woman who answered Leslie Diaz's office phone said Diaz was on vacation. Her boss, program director Luis Alejandro, declined to comment.
      Three ministers on Christian Community in Action's board said they did not know about the FBI investigation.
      "It surprises me," said the Rev. Rafael Melendez, who is Sen. Diaz's 74-year-old half-brother. He said the board meets regularly every two months.
      Sen. Diaz is no stranger to scrutiny. In 2005, he repaid the state $5,000 because he'd used state and federal funds given to the nonprofit Soundview Community in Action to buy furniture for his district office and loudspeakers for his campaign.
      Workers at the nonprofit Soundview said former Gov. Eliot Spitzer ignored more serious allegations that Diaz forced them to give his wife and ex-wife no-show jobs.


      Read more: http://www.nydailynews.com/ny_local/bronx/2008/06/05/2008-06-05_fbi_probing_diaz_duo_over_millions-2.html#ixzz10r1nksC2

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  5. Now that Seabrook's former City Council seat is officially vacant, the people of District 12 are actually getting better service than when that lowlife was actually there ripping off the public.

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  6. Here is what Azi Paybarah had to say about Seabrook's conviction:

    http://www.capitalnewyork.com/article/politics/2012/07/6293473/seabrook-convicted-abuses-quinn-calls-galling?politics-bucket-headline

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  7. Corrupt + Caught + Guilty = Larry Seabrook

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  8. Here's the other Diaz investigation article:

    The New York Times
    March 24, 2007

    F.B.I. AGENTS INVESTIGATE 2 LAWMAKERS IN THE BRONX

    By Manny Fernandez

    The Federal Bureau of Investigation is investigating allegations of corruption against two Bronx lawmakers — State Senator Rubén Díaz Sr. and his son, Assemblyman Rubén Díaz Jr., according to an official familiar with the investigation who spoke on the condition of anonymity.

    The investigation, first reported by The Daily News, came to light on Thursday, when F.B.I. agents visited the city’s Board of Elections office in the Bronx seeking voter petitions and other records for the elder Mr. Díaz and his son. The agents obtained copies of their personal voter registration and voter history records as well as candidate petitions signed by voters, a Board of Elections spokeswoman said.

    READ MORE AT: http://www.nytimes.com/2007/03/24/nyregion/24bronx.html

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  9. just disgraceful

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    1. That kind of thing happens when you mix stupidity & greed.

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  10. Seabrook has been corruptly coasting for years. His counsel seat was basicaly a consolation prize for his loss in the congressional race against Engle. His departure from the council has no historical significance other than to add another name to the long list of recent disgraced & jailed NY politicians. Let's see how many months go by before the next one gets indicted.

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  11. Guess what? New York State has a Lieutenant Governor and his name is Robert J. Duffy.

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  12. How about term limits for District Attorneys?

    Queens County District Attorney Richard A. Brown has been in office since 1991 (21 years). And both the Bronx County District Attorney, Robert T. Johnson, and the Kings County (Brooklyn) District Attorney, Charles J. Hynes, have been in their posts since 1989 (23 years!).

    Just imagine if the United States had the same Attorney General for 5 presidential administrations.

    Things that make you go, “Hmmm.”

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  13. a long and undistinguished career to be remembered for just one thing ... corruption

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  14. Politicians like ex-Councilman Seabrook are the ones who make us hate politicians.

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  15. it's a nice was to end a snore of a career

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  16. The Larry Seabrook disaster is no surprise. That's what you get when you have a City Council based on money politics, pandering and cronyism.

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  17. forget that .. why don't you worry instead that ObamaCare will create a 2-tier system of medical care in the USA.

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