I recently introduced the contributor here. I’ll further generally describe this contributor as a former (pre Katrina) mid level employee of one of the various local governments in the metro New Orleans area that is now a private citizen. In other words way outta the game that unfolds before us today. This person, with the help of reporting by the Times Picayune, Slabbed, American Zombie etc has put together the beginnings of a timeline of the corruption scandal that I now share with you today.
There is one thing I must point out first though because there is a date that belongs on this timeline that is omitted because I’ve not yet shared it before today. What I mean by shared is I have not shared it in context so we must refer back to the following post I did on a Times Picayune story written by Manuel Torres way back in the day: Land swap to give landfill longer life – Council expected to approve proposal. IMHO NOLA needs to reactivate their link to that piece and all the related reporting as Slabbed has learned certain Public Records Requests are being denied on this very topic as it is evidently the subject of the ongoing Federal Grand Jury Investigation into Fred Heebe. Drum roll please as we roll out the players at that point in time:
- Tim Coulon, Parish Prez
- Aaron Broussard, Parish Council chairman
- T.J. “Butch” Ward, Parish Councilman and brother to Albert “Jim” Ward, Fred Heebe’s stepdad.
- Donald Jones, Parish Councilman
- Tom Wilkinson, Parish Attorney
- Tim Whitmer, CAO
With that laid out and without further adieu following are 8 pages of a timeline that begins with the Dutchie Connick memo: Continue reading “RICO Part 1: The beginnings of a comprehensive timeline, from a Slabbed contributor”
Anita Lee is a champ as she and Karen Nelson tag team the next installment of as The Land Trust Turns. In what turns out to be a weird cosmic twist of fate, I too spoke with Melanie Allen with the Land Trust in her capacity as an individual board member not speaking for the Entire Board of Directors or organization. The information she conveyed to me greatly enhanced my understanding of the events surrounding the purchase of Scott Walker’s lot by the Land Trust, acting in the role of financial intermediary for DMR at the behest of CIAP Administrator Tina Shumate, also on the Land Trust Board of Directors. There was one question that Ms Allen could not answer for me but before I get to that I want to emphasize the Land Trust Board is taking this very seriously and have engaged the issues the transaction has brought to the fore.
That said it is also true the same board still contain a cancerous element because the people at the top of the Land Trust have/had financial relationships with DMR. Let’s start with the comment I just left on Anita’s story:
Absolutely these financial relationships were ignored in their decision making. The majority of the board allowed themselves to be led down the primrose path by people with a financial stake at DMR. And there is no doubt they had to know the connection between the seller and DMR.
The question they should have asked themselves is, if the money were not being provided to do this deal, would we buy this parcel over the lot next door that was still relatively pristine? The money being provided to make the deal work was a red flag.
And that perception dates back to the fact set I highlighted back on day 99:
A reader that knows the lay of the land at the Land Trust sent me a few of the connections to Walker on the Land Trust’s Board of Directors as the reasons for the organization conspiring with Walker to allegedly perpetrate a crime comes into sharper focus:
Laura Bowie – Board President; works in an office in the DMR Bolton building at the pleasure of Bill Walker. She is paid by a different group.
In that same office is one of Bill’s long time best friends Phil Bass. Bass retired from the state and went to work for the EPA Gulf of Mexico Program. He is on loan from them.
John Bowie – Advisory Committee member, Laura’s husband. Works for the EPA.
Grant Larson – worked for Tina Shumate at the DMR
William Corky Perrett – worked for Bill at the DMR
On Corky Perret, Anita explains the relationship: Continue reading “DMR Scandal Day 122: Sun Herald reports Tina Shumate the catalyst for DMR purchase of former DMR Executive Director’s son’s lot”
Thursday, February 21st, 2013
Baton Rouge, Louisiana
BIG BANKS AND THEIR CRIMINAL LEADERS GO SCOTT FREE!
After years of financial chicanery, federal prosecutors have decided that Wall Street manipulators are both too big to fail, and too big to jail. The most recent culprit, in what seems to be a conspiracy to “go soft” on financial shenanigans, is the British owned bank, HSBC, that was granted a criminal reprieve and monetary slap on the wrist for confecting the largest drug and terrorism money laundering scheme in U.S. history. To give the aura of being tough on crime, the Justice Department levied a fine of $1.9 billion, which amounts to about five weeks of profit for this international bank for highly suspect, if not outright criminal actions, quite possibly extending as far back as 2001.
HSBC is far from the only bank guilty of such deplorable dealings. There has been a pattern of the largest banks on Wall Street engaging in the most relentless and irresponsible behavior – and this has undermined the entire U.S. financial system. At a U.S. Senate hearing in Washington last week, Senator Elisabeth Warren from Massachusetts confronted bank regulators and ask if they could identify any example of Wall Street bankers being criminally charged and taken to trial. The regulators could only say: “We will get back to you.”
Financial columnist Matt Taibbi concluded in a recent column: “Nobody goes to jail. This is the mantra of the financial–crisis era, one that saw virtually every major bank and financial company on Wall Street embroiled in obscene criminal scandals that impoverished millions and collectively destroyed hundreds of billions, in fact, trillions of dollars of the world’s wealth – and nobody went to jail. Not a single executive who ran the companies that cooked up and cashed in on the phony financial boom has ever been convicted.”
In the case of HSBC, it was the financial lapdog for a number of Mexican drug cartels, many of whom were suspected in thousands of murders during the past decade. The bank also had ties and handled money exchanges for groups linked to Russian gangsters, Hezbollah, Iran, North Korea and Al Qaeda. This was not your friendly, local neighborhood bank. So why wasn’t the bank and key employees charged with assorted federal crimes? Continue reading………….