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In Espada trial, it’s like comparing apples and ... sushi

Riverdale Press
by Adam Wisnieski
May 2, 2012

A bright red apple sat on the defense table in front of former State Sen. Pedro Espada Jr. as his attorney Susan Necheles stood before the jury next to a blown-up photo of the fruit.

“There’s something rotten about this case,” Ms. Necheles said.

During her summation last week, Ms. Necheles wrote things like “threats in the middle of the trial” and “threats in this courthouse” in black marker on top of the apple. She argued that during the U.S. Attorney’s exhaustive case against the former state Senator the government threatened witnesses into testifying.

After the end of summations on April 27, a seven-man, five-woman jury headed into deliberations on Monday to decide if the cast against Mr. Espada was, as Ms. Necheles argued, a bruised apple or a giant pile of sushi paid for with taxpayer money.

At Espada Trial, Jurors’ Notes Hint at Clash in Deliberations

New York Times
by Mosi Secret
May 2, 2012

A federal jury considering whether former State Senator Pedro Espada Jr. is guilty of embezzling hundreds of thousands of dollars from a nonprofit health care network to support his lavish lifestyle is showing signs of discord after three days of deliberations without a verdict.

After jurors expressed their disagreement in notes to the judge, Mr. Espada used the break to hold an impromptu news conference on Wednesday outside the courthouse. He said the trial was a politically motivated attack on his family and the people who received care at the nonprofit clinic, Soundview Health Care Center in the Bronx.

After one note from the jury on Tuesday, the judge,Frederic Block, who is hearing the case in Federal District Court in Brooklyn, told the courtroom, “There seems to be some turbulence or screaming and stuff like that in the jury room.”

Should Pedro Espada be acquitted?

Is his real crime the large amounts of cash he allegedly swiped from the Soundview Health Clinic?

Or is his crime that he exposed other Democrats -- Christine Quinn, Andrew Cuomo, Vito Lopez and countless others -- showing that he is really not so different from them?

Quinn got caught up in the Slushgate scandal, but seems to be escaping further scrutiny from a lazy press and by having a high-priced well connected lawyer paid for her by Mike Bloomberg. She's not waiting for a jury decision. Why not?

Look at Brooklyn power broker Vito Lopez's issues. His troubles are not all that much different from the Espada allegations. Lopez (who is really Italian, not Latino) is one of the most corrupt politicians in NYC, but he's not on trial. Why not?

Former Albany Power Player Remains Upbeat As His Case Goes To Jury

WNYC.org
by Bob Hennelly
April 30, 2012

The jury in the federal corruption trial of former New York State Senate Majority Leader Pedro Espada and his son began deliberations on Monday.

Over the six week trial prosecutors alleged that the father-son team bilked hundreds of thousands of dollars out of their non-profit Bronx Soundview Health Care Clinic to finance a lavish lifestyle.

Espada remained upbeat when he spoke to reporters after the case had been sent to the jury.

“It's in God's hands. It is in the hands of the jury, the very people we put our faith in and so I feel good when God's work is at work, and people are deciding the issue. We feel confident. We feel good," he said.

Son of a gun blames Daddy

New York Post
by Mitchel Maddux
April 28, 2012

Pedro Espada Jr.’s son threw his dad right under the bus yesterday ­ with his lawyer telling a jury it was his father who ran the family’s scandal-scarred Bronx health care clinic.

“It was always his father’s company,” defense attorney Russell Gioiella said during his closing arguments in Brooklyn federal court. “There really is no evidence to connect Pedro [Gautier] Espada to anything.”

The two Espadas are charged with jointly stealing more than half a million dollars from the government-financed Bronx health facility and spending it on lavish dinners and other personal expenses.

'So what?' defense for ex-Bronx state Sen. Pedro Espada Jr.

Lawyer defends his desire to live 'the good life'
New York Daily News
by John Marzulli
April 26, 2012

The lawyer for ex-state Sen. Pedro Espada Jr. pulled out the “So what?” defense to charges his client embezzled hundreds of thousands of dollars from his nonprofit health care center so he could live the good life.

Susan Necheles came out punching after a six-hour summation by the federal prosecutor who had laced into Espada for charging meals, home improvements and even a 95-cent cookie to the Soundview clinic he founded in the Bronx.

“So what if a kid who grew up homeless and in the projects, worked hard all his life and supported his family, so what if he wanted to live the good life?” Necheles said in her closing argument in Brooklyn Federal Court.

Espada’s Lawyer Calls Embezzlement Charges ‘Rotten to the Core’

New York Times
by Mosi Secret
April 25, 2012

A lawyer for former State Senator Pedro Espada Jr. placed a giant poster of a red apple in front of a federal jury on Wednesday and said that the prosecution’s case claiming that her client embezzled money from a nonprofit health center was “rotten to the core.”

The lawyer, Susan R. Necheles, used her closing arguments, which capped a six-week embezzlement trial in United States District Court in Brooklyn, to accuse the government of threatening witnesses who supported Mr. Espada to get them to change their testimony and of allowing other witnesses to testify falsely. She wrote those claims on the poster in black marker.

“You take that shiny apple out of the plastic bag and it’s mushy and full of bruises,” Ms. Necheles said. “The bruises on that apple were a sign to you.”

Fraud Trial for Espada Is Concluding After 6 Weeks

New York Times
by Mosi Secret
April 24, 2012

The six-week trial of Pedro Espada Jr., the former state senator whose audacious power grab brought the New York Legislature to a halt in 2009, approached its conclusion on Tuesday, with a federal prosecutor telling the jury during closing arguments that Mr. Espada used a nonprofit health care network that he ran as his own personal A.T.M.

Mr. Espada and his son, Pedro Gautier Espada, are accused of embezzling money from the nonprofit group, Soundview Health Center in the Bronx. Prosecutors have said Mr. Espada spent hundreds of thousands of dollars of Soundview’s money on extravagant personal items, like lobster, sushi and parties for his family.

“The evidence in this case has shown that the defendants have completely disregarded the trust that was placed in them by the patients and doctors of Soundview, and by the American taxpayer,” the prosecutor, Todd Kaminsky, said in Federal District Court in Brooklyn.

You paid $103,000 for Pedro's fishy eats

New York Post
by Mitchel Maddux
April 21, 2012


For a pig, he loves his sushi.

Federal prosecutors laid out in devastating detail how disgraced Bronx pol Pedro Espada Jr. lavishly dined on the public dime, particularly at Japanese eateries.

He billed his publicly funded health clinic about $103,000 for meals between 2005 and 2009, including more than $20,000 for a staggering 214 visits to a single sushi restaurant.

He rang up another $63,000 in bills for nearly 400 meals at nine other eateries.

Representatives of all 10 restaurants have testified at Espada’s embezzlement trial in Brooklyn Federal Court that family members regularly dined with Espada and none of the meals appeared to be business expenses.

Pedro Soprano?

Pedro Espada's defense witness refers to former state senator as a Soprano
New York Daily News
by John Marzulli
April 21, 2012

Ex-state senator Pedro Espada Jr. was sandbagged by his own defense witness, who described him Friday as someone who ran his health-care empire like Tony Soprano.

It’s one thing for federal prosecutors to call Espada a crook and embezzler, but consultant Ruth Prorok was supposed to help him.

Prorok’s direct testimony began blandly with a rebuttal of the notion that Espada hid his true salary from federal regulators.

Espada Thuggery

Why is Pedro Espada and his in-house thug Norreida Reyes trying to shut down this site? Many Democrats won't acknowledge that Espada is more like them than they would like to admit.

Was Espada's use of government staff in an effort to shut down this web site illegal?

Espada's staff has a problem with the site

Espada's intimidation continues

Espada's cronies confused

ISP Responds to Espada and Norreida Reyes attempt to quash Free Speech

This Doesn't pass the Giggle Test: She calls this site "hate speech"

And with that, we haven't heard a peep from Espada or Ms. Reyes for many months. Perhaps more pressing issues took precedence, like keeping her job now that Pedro Espada is headed to obscurity.

About this site

This site is not associated with, approved by or supported by Pedro Espada, any of his aliases, cronies, hacks, thugs, surrogates, poverty pimps, pals, committees, fake community groups, overly-biased, lazy or questionable journalists, pay-to-play beneficiaries, real estate lawyers, political parties or clubs. This site is also not affiliated or supported in any way with any candidate for political office. It is intended to provide political commentary, criticism, parody and satire. Not a penny of the $14 million allegedly siphoned from Soundview Health Clinic by Pedro Espada for personal expenses went into the creation of this web site.