Posts Tagged ‘fraud’

George Santos (R, NY-3)

January 24, 2023

The Honorable George Santos (R, NY-3)

Republican Congressman George Santos (AKA Anthony Zabrovsky, Anthony Devolder, George Devolder and Kitara Ravache) of New York’s 3th District is now a member of the House Committee on Science, Space and Technology (because he lied about developing carbon capture technology), and the House Committee on Small Business (because he lied about his business experience). At least he’s not on the Ethics Committee.

If you’re keeping score at home, George Santos lied about his: high school, college, ever going to college, volleyball prowess, grad school, religion, race, family history, work history, finances, owning 13 real estate properties, knee replacements, his yacht brokerage, appearing on Hanna Montana, developing carbon capture technology, film acting, losing employees in the Pulse nightclub shooting, getting mugged, being a drag queen, having a brain tumor, running a pet rescue charity, past marital status, getting COVID, and his own mother’s death. More is sure to come.

But as Jon Stewart observes: “The thing we have to be careful of, and I always caution myself on this and I ran into this trouble with Trump, is we cannot mistake absurdity for lack of danger, because it takes people with no shame to do shameful things.”

How did he get elected in the first place? By telling Democratic and Republican voters in his district what each wanted to hear. As Bill Maher puts it: “He is the first one to realize that since we are all in our hermetically sealed media bubbles, now you can pretend to be everything to voters in both parties.”

The Republican majority is so slim that GOP members are reluctant to pressure Mr. Santos into resigning from the House. His district could easily elect a Democrat to replace him, so he’ll stay until the federal, state, Nassau County, Queens, and/or Brazilian courts catch up with him.

More:

“Rep. George Santos Appears to Have Ripped Off His Former Boss’s Resume in Crafting His Backstory,” Virginia Chamlee, People

“George Santos’ backers include a migrant smuggler, a big Trump donor and the cousin of a sanctioned Russian oligarch,” Clare Hymes and Graham Kates, CBS News

“Another Santos Money Mystery: He Struck a Curious Business Deal With a Veteran GOP Operative,” Noah Lanard and David Corn, Mother Jones

“Campaigns Linked To Santos Left Donors Feeling Ripped Off After Questionable Credit Card Charges,” Hunter Walker and Josh Kovensky, TPM

Update:

“Scientists Welcome ‘Astronaut,’ ‘Nobel Winner’ George Santos To House Science Committee,” Chris D’Angelo, HuffPost

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Image by Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.com. Download a copy hereNote: Politifact hasn’t yet fact-checked George Santo’s statements. Maybe it’s too overwhelming.

Comments are welcome if they are on-topic, substantive, concise, and not boring or obscene. Comments may be edited for clarity and length.

The Honorable George Santos (R, NY-3)

January 17, 2023

The Honorable George Santos (R, NY-3)

Outside of Hollywood, you’d think doing business with someone who is using an assumed name would raise concerns, but it didn’t. As a result, George Santos, AKA Anthony Zabrovsky, Anthony Devolder, Kitara Ravache, and George Devolder (of dubious investment firm Harbor City Capital) is now the newly-sworn-in Republican Congressman representing New York’s 3th District.

After he was elected, Rep. Devolder Zabrovsky Ravache Santos admitted to embellishing his résumé, but it’s all embellishment, no résumé. He lied about his: high school, college, ever going to college, volleyball prowess, grad school, religion, family history, work history, finances, owning 13 real estate properties, developing carbon capture technology, losing employees in the Pulse nightclub shooting, running a pet rescue charity, past marital status, and his own mother’s death. Other dirty shoes will probably drop.

George Santos makes Herschel Walker look like the very soul of probity. He should be an embarrassment to Congressional Republicans, but they are noted for lack of shame, and their majority is so slim they’re reluctant to pressure Mr. Santos into resigning from the House. His district could easily elect a Democrat to replace him, so he’ll stay until the federal, state, Nassau County, Queens, and/or Brazilian courts catch up with him.

Months before the election, some of George Santos’ falsehoods were uncovered by the local North Shore Leader newspaper, and some lies were known to Republican consultants. These red flags were ignored in the heat of the campaign.

New York Magazine calls George Santos “The Luckiest Liar in Politics.” If you want to congratulate him on his fabrication-based good fortune, send cards to: The Honorable George Santos, 1117 Longworth House Office Building, Washington DC, 20515-3203 or call him at 202-225-3335.

Constituent well-wishers may prefer to contact his District Office in Queens: 242-09 Northern Boulevard, Douglaston, NY 11363 (phone 718-631-0400).

Rep. Santos doesn’t have a public email address, but his Chief of Staff does.

Want George Santos to attend your new waste disposal service’s ribbon-cutting or your nephew’s bar mitzvah? Use this handy contact form.

Update:

George Santos has been appointed to two House committees. He will sit on the House Committee on Science, Space and Technology (because he lied about developing carbon capture technology), and the House Committee on Small Business (because he lied about his business experience).

More:

“Keeping track of all of NY Rep.-elect George Santos’ lies, from his education to charity falsehoods,” Bruce Golding, New York Post

“Rep. George Santos Appears to Have Ripped Off His Former Boss’s Resume in Crafting His Backstory,” Virginia Chamlee, People

“George Santos’ backers include a migrant smuggler, a big Trump donor and the cousin of a sanctioned Russian oligarch,” Clare Hymes and Graham Kates, CBS News

“Another Santos Money Mystery: He Struck a Curious Business Deal With a Veteran GOP Operative,” Noah Lanard and David Corn, Mother Jones

“Campaigns Linked To Santos Left Donors Feeling Ripped Off After Questionable Credit Card Charges,” Hunter Walker and Josh Kovensky, TPM

 

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Image by Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.com. Download a copy hereNote: Politifact hasn’t yet fact-checked George Santo’s statements. Maybe it’s too overwhelming.

Comments are welcome if they are on-topic, substantive, concise, and not boring or obscene. Comments may be edited for clarity and length.

Trump Shell Game

October 18, 2022

Trump Shell Game

A new new company with a familiar name was incorporated in Delaware on September 15th: Trump Organization II LLC. It registered to do business in New York State on September 21st, the same day that state’s attorney general filed a 220-page fraud lawsuit against Donald Trump, his family, and the original Trump Organization, the umbrella company for the former president’s real-estate and golf resorts. NY AG James has filed court papers to prevent Trump from sheltering assests by shifting them from Trump Org I to Trump Org II in a corporate shell game.

More:

“Trump Forms New Company, Drawing Scrutiny From N.Y. Attorney General,” Ben Protess, Jonah E. Bromwich and William K. Rashbaum, New York Times

“Trump Organization II Mocked as Court Filings Reveal New Delaware Company,” Zoe Strozewski, Newsweek

“Trump Organization assets should be frozen, New York attorney general asks court,” Max Jaeger, Politico

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Image (“Trump Shell Game”) by Mike Licht. Download a copy here. Creative Commons license; credit Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.com

Comments are welcome if they are on-topic, substantive, concise, and not boring or obscene. Comments may be edited for clarity and length.

Trump Fraud Lawsuit: Red Meat?

September 23, 2022

Trump Fraud Lawsuit: Red Meat?

After a three-year civil investigation into the Trump Organization’s business practices, New York State Attorney General Letitia James has sued Donald Trump, his adult children Donald Jr., Eric, and Ivanka, and Trump Organization employees for falsely inflating the value of assets for many years to receive tax breaks and favorable loan and insurance rates. The suit aims to recover $250 million. Said AG James: “Claiming you have money that you do not have does not amount to the art of the deal. It’s the art of the steal.”

Attorney General James seeks to bar Trump and his organization from buying commercial real estate or receiving bank loans for five years, and to permanently bar Trump, Donald Jr., Ivanka, and Eric Trump from serving as executives in any New York companies. Naturally, Trump’s attorney called the filing politically motivated.

This is a civil suit, but the charges, if true, would point to federal and local criminal charges, and AG James has referred these matters to the US Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York and the Manhattan District Attorney.

More:

“Donald Trump, 3 of his children accused of business fraud by New York AG,” Shayna Jacobs and Jonathan O’Connell, Washington Post

“New York attorney general lawsuit accuses Trump of ‘staggering’ fraud,” Hugo Lowell, Maya Yang and Martin Pengelly The Guardian

“‘Art of the steal’: Trump accused of vast fraud in NY suit
By Michael R. Sisak and Larry Neumeister, Associated Press

“New York attorney general sues Trump, accuses him of “astounding” fraud and deception,” Andrew Prokop, Vox

Updates:

“It’s Just Fraud All the Way Down,” David A. Graham. The Atlantic

“As Trump’s Legal Woes Mount, So Do Financial Pressures on Him,” Maggie Haberman, Ben Protess, Matthew Goldstein and Eric Lipton, New York Times

“Are Mar-a-Lago and other Trump-owned properties over-valued?” Sam Cabral, BBC News

“How Screwed Are Donald Trump and His Adult Children, and Other Questions You Might Have About the ‘Staggering’ Fraud Lawsuit Against Them,” Bess Levin, Vanity Fair

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Image by Mike Licht. Download a copy here. Creative Commons license; credit Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.com

Comments are welcome if they are on-topic, substantive, concise, and not boring or obscene. Comments may be edited for clarity and length.

 

Right-Wing Apparel Maker’s Fake ‘Made In USA’ Claims

August 15, 2022

Right Wing Apparel Maker's Fake 'Made In USA' Claims

The Utah-based Lions Not Sheep clothing company sells T-shirts and baseball caps with provocative slogans printed on them, sure to appeal to the gun-toting, camo-wearing, flag-waving, Trump-loving, by-God self-proclaimed MAGA patriots on your gift list. The Federal Trade Commission just fined the firm for ripping the “Made In China” labels from their imported duds and putting “Made In USA” tags on them. The fraudsters came to FTC attention after bragging about the label-switch on social media.

The Made in USA Labeling Rule, effective as of August 2021, prohibits claims that a product was made in the United States unless final assembly or processing of the product occurs in the U.S., all significant processing that goes into the product occurs domestically, and all or virtually all ingredients or components of the product are made and sourced in the U.S.

More:

“Pro-Trump brand is fined by FTC for incorrect ‘Made in the USA’ labels,” María Luisa Paúl, Washington Post

Pro-Trump apparel company fined for falsely labeling products “Made in USA,” Julia Shapero, Axios

“Utah-based Lions Not Sheep apparel company fined for swapping ‘Made in China’ tags for ‘Made in USA.’” Kyle Dunphey, Deseret News

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Image by Mike Licht. Download a copy here. Creative Commons license; credit Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.com

Comments are welcome if they are on-topic, substantive, concise, and not boring or obscene. Comments may be edited for clarity and length.

 

Dr. Trump’s Last Prescription: Pardon Florida Healthcare Fraudsters

January 22, 2021

Dr. Trump's Last Prescriptions: Pardon Florida Healthcare Fraudsters

On January 20th, before fleeing to Palm Beach (where his neighbors don’t want him) lame duck grifter Donald Trump granted clemency to fellow Floridians convicted of engaging in the Sunshine State’s flourishing industry, Medicare and Medicaid fraud:

Philip Esformes, a nursing home system operator convicted of a $1.3 Billion Medicare fraud, largest in the the nation’s history, won comutation of his 20-year prison sentence.

South Florida eye doctor Salomon Melgen was serving a 17-year sentence for a $73 million Medicare fraud conviction, was pardoned by Mr. Trump, a Florida neighbor.

Also pardoned: Todd Farha, Thaddeus Bereday, William Kale, Paul Behrens, and Peter Clay, former executives of Florida’s WellCare Health Plans, were convicted of defrauding the state’s Medicaid program of over $35 million.

This should make him welcome in his new retirement home, a state represented by a Republican senator once involved in a $1.7 billion Medicare fraud.

More:

“The doctors Trump pardoned for defrauding the government,” Anjalee Khemlani, Yahoo Finance

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Image by Mike Licht. Download a copy here. Creative Commons license; credit Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.com

Comments are welcome if they are on-topic, substantive, concise, and not boring or obscene. Comments may be edited for clarity and length.

NY AG Has NRA in the Crosshairs

August 7, 2020

NY AG Has NRA in the Crosshairs

New York Attorney General Letitia James, alleging years of fraud and corruption by National Rifle Association executives, filed a lawsuit Thursday seeking to dissolve the NRA. Attorney General James has jurisdiction since the purportedly nonprofit NRA was chartered in New York State in 1871. The suit outlines decades of self-dealing, questionable contracts to family and friends of NRA leaders, payoffs, luxury executive perks, lavish compensation, and tens of millions in financial misconduct. Since the allegations involve tax fraud, the state is sharing its information with the IRS. Bewhiskered General Ambrose Burnside, first NRA President, is no doubt rolling around in his grave.

The DC Attorney General, claiming that the NRA raided its own NRA Foundation to stem the losses of the NRA proper, filed a second lawsuit against the gun group.

More:

“New York Attorney General Sues N.R.A. and Seeks Its Closure,” Danny Hakim, New York Times

“New York AG sues to dissolve the NRA, alleging widespread fraud,” Betsy Woodruff Swan, Max Cohen, and Michelle Bocanegra, Politico

“Wayne LaPierre allegedly used NRA as a ‘personal piggy bank,’ N.Y. AG says,” Erik Ortiz, NBC News

(more…)

Trump: Over 15,000 Lies in 3 Years

December 17, 2019

Trump: Over 15,000 Lies in 3 Years

“As of Dec. 10, his 1,055th day in office, Trump had made 15,413 false or misleading claims, according to the Fact Checker’s database that analyzes, categorizes and tracks every suspect statement he has uttered. “

More:

“President Trump has made 15,413 false or misleading claims over 1,055 days,” Glenn Kessler, Salvador Rizzo and Meg Kelly, Washington Post

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Image by Mike Licht. Download a copy here. Creative Commons license; credit Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.com

Comments are welcome if they are on-topic, substantive, concise, and not boring or obscene. Comments may be edited for clarity and length.

Trump Family Foundation Fraudsters Fined, Get Schooled

November 13, 2019

Trump Family Foundation Fraudsters Fined, Get Schooled

Donald Trump will pay $2 million in fines for misusing Trump Foundation charity funds to futher his own political ends, pay business debts, and buy a 6-foot-tall portrait of himself for $10,000. New York County Supreme Court Justice Saliann Scarpulla ordered that the fine and the remaining assets of the defunct foundation, $1.7 million, will be disbursed to legitimate charities: the Army Emergency Relief, the Children’s Aid Society, Citymeals-on-Wheels, Give an Hour, Martha’s Table, United Negro College Fund, United Way of National Capital Area, and the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum.

Foundation directors Donald Trump Jr., Eric Trump, and Ivanka Trump have been sentenced to re-education camp, and will take classes in how honest board members govern a legitimate nonprofit organization. Papa Trump is exempt from education, either because he’s president, too old to learn, or possibly due to bone spurs.

More:

“Trump Ordered to Pay $2 Million to Charities for Misuse of Foundation,” Alan Feuer, New York Times

“Trump learns that fake charities are tons of fun until you get caught,” Kathleen Parker, Washington Post

Update:

“Trump Pays $2 Million Fine for Abusing His Own Charity,” Adam K. Raymond, New York Magazine

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Image by Mike Licht. Download a copy here. Creative Commons license; credit Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.com

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Florida: Biggest Health Care Fraud Ever

April 12, 2019

Florida: Biggest Health Care Fraud Ever

A Federal jury has found Florida health care network owner Philip Esformes guilty of running an 18-year, $1.3 billion Medicare and Medicaid fraud scheme. He used some of the money to bribe the University of Pennsylvania basketball coach to get his son into Penn. If his son is pre-law, maybe the kid can help him with the fraud appeal.

Philip Esformes, a man of convictions. We reluctantly point out that this is the “largest health care fraud in U.S. history.” Every time we do that, some Florida Man is found pulling an even bigger scam.

More:

“Florida businessman convicted in $1B Medicare fraud case,” Adriana Gomez Licon, Associated Press

“Miami healthcare exec Philip Esformes found guilty of paying kickbacks and bribes,”Jay Weaver and David Ovalle, Miami Herald

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Image by Mike Licht. Download a copy here. Creative Commons license; credit Mike Licht, NotionsCapital.com

Comments are welcome if they are on-topic, substantive, concise, and not boring or obscene. Comments may be edited for clarity and length.

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