Skip to comments.Another Friend of Giuliani's Embroiled in Sheriff’s Criminal Case
Posted on 12/04/2007 6:24:07 PM PST by calcowgirl
When Hank Asher reached into the bag and pulled out the two $15,000 gold Cartier watches, the holiday crowd at Carmine's restaurant on 44th Street in Manhattan noticed, patrons recalled. Later, so did the U.S. attorney in Orange County, Calif., and soon yet another of Rudy Giuliani's business partners was embroiled in a bribery case.
Asher, identified by the initials H.A. in Overt Act 59 of a federal grand jury indictment against Orange County sheriff Michael Carona, had handed the diamond-encrusted Cartier baubles to the wives of the sheriff and his deputy, and with that, assured himself a place in a federal indictment that was looming.
Asher is not charged with any crime in the indictment. But his expensive gifts are clearly part of the corruption investigation.
It was far from his first brush with controversy or the law.
Asher, earlier in his life, had, by his own admission, smuggled plane-loads of cocaine worth millions of dollars from the Bahamas to the U.S. He later cooperated with law enforcement in an effort to end similar smuggling operations.
Since 2005, he has been Giuliani's partner along with the Mayo Clinic in Jari Research, a business set on finding a bone marrow cancer cure and making a profit.
Self-educated, worldly, charismatic and larger than life, according to associates, Asher, a high school dropout at age 16, today is worth north of $700 million.
He made his money by writing the algorithms that are the foundation of a commercial datamining business used by federal law enforcement and big city police as well as creditors and law firms.
The business began as a motor vehicle records database he dubbed Auto Track and later sold. He then developed Accurint, a library of linked database volumes containing information on hundreds of millions of people, which he sold to LexisNexis. For all intents and purposes, the business revolutionized database searching and eroded an enormous amount of perceived privacy.
Asher's friends span the spectrum from Rudy Giuliani to Jesse Jackson and F. Lee Bailey. His business supporters have included Giuliani, Vice President Dick Cheney, and former Homeland Security Secretary Tom Ridge.
His business associates include some of the same drug agents who years ago learned of Asher's smuggling when he walked into their lives accompanied by Bailey and began a campaign to convince other smugglers he knew to leave the business or face investigations and jail.
Business associates say the venture with Giuliani and the Mayo Clinic is motivated by a genuine desire to find a cure for multiple myeloma cancer, spurred by Asher witnessing the disease ravage his sister Sari, who died from it last month at age 54. During the course of her treatment, doctors discovered Asher's own bone marrow cells were a rare match with his sister's, and he underwent the painful process of harvesting those cells to try to save her life.
During the Carmine's dinner, when Asher's voice began to boom across the room, patrons recall him handing his black American Express card to the restaurant to pay for any inconvenience his boisterous party caused the other guests. He told the staff to buy everyone's dinners and drinks and then peeled off a few $100 bills to tip strolling carolers in the restaurant.
It is this same extravagance that seems to have embroiled him in the federal bribery case involving Sheriff Carona, his wife and his mistress. Carona is accused in the indictment of corruptly using the office of the sheriff "to enrich himself." His wife, Deborah, and "longtime mistress," Debra Hoffman, are also linked to the "acceptance of cash payments, as well as gifts, trips, the use of yachts and private planes and other things of value," according to the indictment.
Amid the allegations of the acceptance of ringside tickets to championship boxing, the acceptance of bogus campaign contributions and numerous other charges, including the acceptance of Mont Blanc fountain pens worth $1,400, is Overt Act 59:
"On or about December 19, 2002, defendant Deborah Carona and co-conspirator George Jaramillo (assistant Sheriff George Jaramillo) accepted as gifts from H.A., a businessman who owned a data mining software company, yellow gold and diamond Ladies Cartier Watches worth approximately $15,000 each."
Asher is not named as a defendant in the case, and there is no allegation in the document that he attempted to influence any purchases or other decisions by the county.
But the gift is among the many that the Caronas and co-conspirator Hoffman failed to disclose. The pattern of alleged corruption led to them to be walked in handcuffs -- Sheriff Carona in the middle flanked by his wife and alleged mistress -- into federal custody.
For Giuliani, the disclosures regarding Asher again seem to demonstrate a propensity on the candidate's part for embracing controversial figures including Bernard Kerik, the disgraced former New York City police commissioner, a disgraced priest accused of pedophilia, a Pennsylvania fundraiser who was arrested, convicted and served time for bribery in connection with official duties, and convicted tax-dodger James Ortenzio, a key Rudy fundraiser and former head of the New York County Republican Party.
At Jari Research, an associate of Asher's said, "No one speaks for Mr. Asher" except Asher, and it did not appear likely he would return a call as he was immersed in a "celebration of life" for his sister. Asher hosted a similar celebration last week where Harry Connick Jr. serenaded the guests.
"This would seem to be another case of trying to find a story where there isn't one. Over the course of his career, Mayor Giuliani has worked with numerous well-respected and highly regarded individuals as a member of the Reagan Department of Justice, US Attorney, Mayor of New York and private practice," said Maria Comella, a spokesperson for Giuliani.
Sheriff Carona's attorney declined comment when reached by ABC News.
Gee.. if ABC spent this much effort into having an actual investigation of the Clintons, they would notice that Norman Hsu was indicted today allegedly for raising money for “a Democratic Presidential Candidate.” A big plus would be facts at hand instead of this gossip column posing as journalism.
Even Brit Hume didn’t have the Beans to say that Hsu was indicted for the Arkansas trash can brigade slush fund and money bundling campaign donations.
Are we living in an alternate Universe or what?
I think any time sex is brought up by BJ Clinton or his
baggage, it is to cover a treasonous act or other crime.
Dec. 4, 2007
The Blotter: U.S.: Hillary Fundraiser Used Position to Scam $20 Million
Dec. 4, 2007
Hsu Indicted in Federal Court
Dec. 4, 2007
Democratic fundraiser Hsu indicted on fraud scheme
Dec. 4, 2007
Democratic Fundraiser Indicted in NY
Dec. 4, 2007
Democratic fundraiser Hsu indicted on 15 counts
I wouldn’t be caught dead reading an “ABC Blotter”.
Perhaps it is more important what the sheeple see on the boob tube.
I don’t see the name “Clinton” named in those articles, but ole Hsu Hsu wasn’t out there stealing the cats pajamas for just any one!
Now was he?
She is mentioned in each and every article I linked... this opening paragraph, for example:
One of Sen. Hillary Clinton's major fundraisers, Norman Hsu, used his position in the campaign to help carry out a $20 million Ponzi-like fraud scheme, federal prosecutors said today.
Personally, I'd like to see our party clean up its own act so that we can criticize the D's without sounding like hypocrites. Rudy and his dirty laundry have only begun to be exposed. He can't be out of this race soon enough, IMO.
My rant regards the ineptitude of the media.
I am no fan of Rudy’s.
What poses for “journalism” on these ABC blogs reminds me of Green Helmet guy twaddle.
Im pro-choice. Im pro-gay rights, Giuliani said. He was then asked whether he supports a ban on what critics call partial-birth abortions. No, I have not supported that, and I dont see my position on that changing, he responded. Source: CNN.com, Inside Politics Dec 2, 1999 http://www.ontheissues.org/2008/Rudy_Giuliani_Abortion.htm
ANDERSON COOPER 360 DEGREES (November 14, 2006)
RUDY GIULIANI (R), FORMER MAYOR OF NEW YORK CITY: I'm pro- choice. I'm pro-gay rights.
KING: Giuliani supports a woman's right to an abortion, and back in 1999, he opposed a federal ban on late-term abortions.
GIULIANI: No, I have not supported that, and I don't see my position on that changing.
KING: Immigration could be another presidential landmine. Back in 1996, Mayor Giuliani went to federal court to challenge new federal laws requiring the city to inform the federal government about illegal immigrants.
JEFFREY: He took the side of illegal immigrants in New York City against the Republican Congress.
KING: Giuliani opposes same-sex marriage but as mayor, he supported civil unions and extending health and other benefits to gay couples. He also supported the assault weapons ban and other gun control measures opposed by the National Rifle Association.
GIULIANI: I'm in favor of gun control. I'm pro-choice.
Republican Big-Wigs Support Pro-Abortion Event in NY
Pro-abortion Governor George Pataki and New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani, who also supports unrestricted abortion, are co-chairs of the 2000 Choice Award Presentation to be held on May 30 at the St. Regis Hotel in New York City. The event is sponsored by the Republican Pro-Choice Coalition, a group that is campaigning for the removal of the pro-life plank from the Republican National Platform.
You got THAT right!
I would venture a guess that Hillary is dumping FBI files on the MSM.
Hank Asher is the Seisint guy.
...The two met when Asher demonstrated his Matrix database software for Giuliani in 2002. The ex-mayor has said that he immediately became an enthusiast: “this was a technology that would have been very helpful to us even when I was the mayor and putting together programs for reducing crime to help us find serial killers, abductors of children, and of course terrorists.” Something else might have explained his enthusiasm: Asher and Giuliani inked a deal in December 2002 for Giuliani Partners to represent Asher’s company, Seisint.
The deal, first reported by The Washington Post this spring, was remarkably sweet: $2 million per year, a commission on sales of Seisint products, and 800,000 warrants to buy company stock. How much that added up to is unclear. The Post reported that Giuliani Partners got “most” of the promised compensation and that the stock warrants proved most valuable, since Seisint was sold to LexisNexis in 2004 for $775 million.
In return for all that, Asher got . . . well, it’s not clear. In fact, the Post reported, a Seisint shareholder sued the company in 2004 over the contract, arguing that it was a “waste of corporation assets” to enter into a contract for which the company received “no benefit.” The lawsuit was later settled.
There was at least a rationale for the deal.
Federal, state, and local agencies were interested in his product, particularly after the 9/11 attacks. But there was the problem of Asher’s drug-running past potentially coming back to bite him. So apparently Giuliani’s job was to help Asher land the biggest of those fish: contracts with the federal government. As the shareholder put it in his suit, Giuliani was hired to use his “influence with the federal government to enable Mr. Asher to take an active role in Seisint as a chief executive officer despite the allegations about his drug dealing.” (For the record, Asher smuggled drugs on his plane and didn’t deal drugs directly.) The Bush administration eventually made $12 million in grants for the software program.
What do the yellow letters spell?
And he’s got a ‘hat’ in his hands too....lol
I didn’t catch that. Nice! Wonder if there is a tin-foil side to this production?!?
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