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New York, NY - Rapfogel Admits Stealing From Prominent NYC Jewish Charity; Faces Up To 10 Years In Prison

Published on: April 23, 2014 10:39 AM
By: AP
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FILE - Rapfogel under arrest on Sept. 24 2013 (courtesy to VINNews.com via MARCUS SANTOS/NEW YORK DAILY NEWS)New York, NY -  The politically connected former CEO of a prominent New York City charity has admitted he helped steal more than $9 million from the organization in an insurance scheme that authorities linked to campaign contributions.

William Rapfogel pleaded guilty to grand larceny, money laundering and other charges in a case that had rattled city and state political circles.

He formerly led the Metropolitan Council on Jewish Poverty, which has long enjoyed close ties to politicians and has collected more than $26 million in state and city grants in recent years, and his wife was Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver’s chief of staff.

Rapfogel became the executive director of the Met Council, as it is known, in 1992. He soon joined several conspirators in conniving to inflate the price of the organization’s insurance so they could pocket the overcharge, ultimately splitting more than $5 million over 20 years, Attorney General Eric Schneiderman said.

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“I knowingly stole more than $1M from the Metropolitan Council on Jewish policy as part of a scheme in which insurance premiums were inflated,” Rapfogel said in court.

He used $27,000 of that money to pay a contractor working on his home, and he had more than $400,000 in cash hidden in his home when investigators searched it in August 2013, Schneiderman said.

Rapfogel will be sentenced to 3 1/3 years to 10 years in state prison if he pays more than $3 million in restitution. He already has turned over nearly $1.5 million.

Rapfogel also directed a conspirator at an insurance company to use money reaped from the insurance scam to make donations to candidates and political groups on the Met Council’s behalf, the attorney general said.

Candidates for New York City, state and federal offices received campaign contributions of tens of thousands of dollars from the insurance company owners and employees, Schneiderman said. He didn’t identify the recipients.

After the allegations emerged, several New York City Democratic mayoral candidates decided to return contributions related to the insurance company, mostly received years ago. Among them was now-Mayor Bill de Blasio, whose campaign gave back $1,650 given in the 2009 election cycle.

No official made any connection between the donations and Silver’s office. Both Silver and wife have said they knew nothing about Rapfogel’s misdeeds.

Rapfogel was fired in August from his $340,000-a-year job, with the charity citing “financial irregularities” and “apparent misconduct.”

At the time, he said, “I deeply regret the mistakes I have made” but didn’t give specifics.

He was charged the next month, in a case investigated by Schneiderman and state Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli. Both are Democrats.

The Met Council’s work includes career counseling, handling donated clothes and installing safety equipment in the homes of the elderly. Its board includes some of New York’s most influential Jewish leaders, and its annual legislative breakfast is one of the major events of the political calendar in the city.

In 2012, Rapfogel supported Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s order limiting salaries at nonprofit social service agencies, saying there some “bad players” taking advantage of the system. Rapfogel was also a prominent appointment to Schneiderman’s Leadership Committee for Nonprofit Revitalization in 2011.



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Read Comments (13)  —  Post Yours »

1

 Apr 23, 2014 at 10:49 AM EZRAFROMBP Says:

lets see whats going to happen with the ex ceo of hatzaloh who was also involved

2

 Apr 23, 2014 at 11:27 AM Big Masmid Says:

Moshiach is on his way...

3

 Apr 23, 2014 at 11:46 AM Anonymous Says:

Rapfogel, Dweck, Rubashkin - all stains on our community. When will we learn that the punishment in Shomayim is greater, whether we are caught here or not??

4

 Apr 23, 2014 at 11:29 AM Anonymous Says:

Please he did business as usual. He was a poltican like anyone else. You think Eva Moskowitz never inflates prices for state funding for her charter schools? (This was just as one example that came to my head nothing per say against Eva.)

5

 Apr 23, 2014 at 02:47 PM Sherree Says:

Reply to #3  
Anonymous Says:

Rapfogel, Dweck, Rubashkin - all stains on our community. When will we learn that the punishment in Shomayim is greater, whether we are caught here or not??

How could you possibly lump Rubashkin in with these crooks? There is no correlation. Rapfogel and Dweck are two very greedy individuals who did not find satisfaction in what Hashem already gave them. They were very greedy individuals. On the other hand Rubashkin found himself being hounded by the government and backed into a corner while they were climbing up his "you know what" for no reason and did a stupid thing that didn't hurt anyone and didn't cost anyone anything. The bank was making good money off the loan payments and it wasn't the bank that was unhappy and forced the issue. It was the government and the judge who falsely accused him and then had to find something to justify the millions of dollars spent on a useless and needless embarrassing raid.

For the Millions of dollars these two crooks stole and benefitted from, and hurt others for, these two crooks will sit for a but a few years. Because the government embarrassed themselves they buried their boosha by hiding Rubashkin in prison for 27 years on compounded convoluted charges.

6

 Apr 23, 2014 at 03:06 PM Anonymous Says:

Reply to #4  
Anonymous Says:

Please he did business as usual. He was a poltican like anyone else. You think Eva Moskowitz never inflates prices for state funding for her charter schools? (This was just as one example that came to my head nothing per say against Eva.)

Two wrongs don't make a right. Stop justifying Frum fraud!!!

7

 Apr 23, 2014 at 04:24 PM Anonymous Says:

Reply to #5  
Sherree Says:

How could you possibly lump Rubashkin in with these crooks? There is no correlation. Rapfogel and Dweck are two very greedy individuals who did not find satisfaction in what Hashem already gave them. They were very greedy individuals. On the other hand Rubashkin found himself being hounded by the government and backed into a corner while they were climbing up his "you know what" for no reason and did a stupid thing that didn't hurt anyone and didn't cost anyone anything. The bank was making good money off the loan payments and it wasn't the bank that was unhappy and forced the issue. It was the government and the judge who falsely accused him and then had to find something to justify the millions of dollars spent on a useless and needless embarrassing raid.

For the Millions of dollars these two crooks stole and benefitted from, and hurt others for, these two crooks will sit for a but a few years. Because the government embarrassed themselves they buried their boosha by hiding Rubashkin in prison for 27 years on compounded convoluted charges.

Rubashkin is even more guilty since kids were burned from the way they were handling chlorox. Can you imagine if your child worked in Rubashkin's factory and burned his lungs and skin?

8

 Apr 23, 2014 at 08:05 PM mewhoze Says:

I wish I had copied pasted my response to the other similar post. main point is let us all stop judging and watch our own selves instead.
let us pray we never succumb to the yetzer hora

9

 Apr 23, 2014 at 08:11 PM Chaim Eliezer Says:

Reply to #5  
Sherree Says:

How could you possibly lump Rubashkin in with these crooks? There is no correlation. Rapfogel and Dweck are two very greedy individuals who did not find satisfaction in what Hashem already gave them. They were very greedy individuals. On the other hand Rubashkin found himself being hounded by the government and backed into a corner while they were climbing up his "you know what" for no reason and did a stupid thing that didn't hurt anyone and didn't cost anyone anything. The bank was making good money off the loan payments and it wasn't the bank that was unhappy and forced the issue. It was the government and the judge who falsely accused him and then had to find something to justify the millions of dollars spent on a useless and needless embarrassing raid.

For the Millions of dollars these two crooks stole and benefitted from, and hurt others for, these two crooks will sit for a but a few years. Because the government embarrassed themselves they buried their boosha by hiding Rubashkin in prison for 27 years on compounded convoluted charges.

Please take the time to read Judge Reade's statement explaining her sentence. Rubashkin committed forgery every single month in order to borrow more money than he deserved. This had been going on for ten years. His whole operation was house of cards. If the immigration raid didn't collapse it, something else would have.

Lots of people made "good money" off Bernie Madoff, so long as he was able to keep his swindle going.

10

 Apr 24, 2014 at 11:24 AM Asher Yotzar Says:

Reply to #5  
Sherree Says:

How could you possibly lump Rubashkin in with these crooks? There is no correlation. Rapfogel and Dweck are two very greedy individuals who did not find satisfaction in what Hashem already gave them. They were very greedy individuals. On the other hand Rubashkin found himself being hounded by the government and backed into a corner while they were climbing up his "you know what" for no reason and did a stupid thing that didn't hurt anyone and didn't cost anyone anything. The bank was making good money off the loan payments and it wasn't the bank that was unhappy and forced the issue. It was the government and the judge who falsely accused him and then had to find something to justify the millions of dollars spent on a useless and needless embarrassing raid.

For the Millions of dollars these two crooks stole and benefitted from, and hurt others for, these two crooks will sit for a but a few years. Because the government embarrassed themselves they buried their boosha by hiding Rubashkin in prison for 27 years on compounded convoluted charges.

Rubashkin did worse. He was the person most responsible for the worst chillul Hashem in America. While the other 2 kept their activities in the NY area, Rubashkin was on a national and international level.

Are you saying that frauding a bank is not considered to be a crime? What values do YOU have? Why not rob a bank and say that the insurance will pay for it, they have plenty of money, anyway!!

Rubashkin is a stain on America, Yiddishket and Lubavitch.

11

 Apr 24, 2014 at 07:52 PM Sherree Says:

Reply to #7  
Anonymous Says:

Rubashkin is even more guilty since kids were burned from the way they were handling chlorox. Can you imagine if your child worked in Rubashkin's factory and burned his lungs and skin?

Prove that what you say is true. Nothing came of the charges of underage employment. And you would have to blame any supervisor who "knowingly" hired them and/or knowingly ignored safety guidelines. That's like accusing the Rosh Yeshiva for the bus driver saying "shut up" to the kids. There is a chain of command and levels of employees and designees responsible for various areas in any corporation.

If you want to blame him for not being a good businessman I will agree with you. But I will not agree that you can point fingers of blame on a person who trusted people and employees he shouldn't have trusted and who was but a Talmud chacham ill equipped to take over a business his father handed him.

12

 Apr 24, 2014 at 07:55 PM Sherree Says:

Reply to #9  
Chaim Eliezer Says:

Please take the time to read Judge Reade's statement explaining her sentence. Rubashkin committed forgery every single month in order to borrow more money than he deserved. This had been going on for ten years. His whole operation was house of cards. If the immigration raid didn't collapse it, something else would have.

Lots of people made "good money" off Bernie Madoff, so long as he was able to keep his swindle going.

Let's read the information about the good Judge Reade who was involved herself in the planning of the raid and bringing Rubashkin down before any such fraud even existed. All bank loans and payments were made on time with no issues or problems with the bank at the time Judge Reade got involved with the case. Please stay informed if you wish to comment. All the issues and problems happened after the goverment backed them into a corner and climbed up his tuchus. .

13

 Apr 25, 2014 at 12:47 AM Sherree Says:

Reply to #9  
Chaim Eliezer Says:

Please take the time to read Judge Reade's statement explaining her sentence. Rubashkin committed forgery every single month in order to borrow more money than he deserved. This had been going on for ten years. His whole operation was house of cards. If the immigration raid didn't collapse it, something else would have.

Lots of people made "good money" off Bernie Madoff, so long as he was able to keep his swindle going.

Let's read the information about the good Judge Reade who was involved herself in the planning of the raid and bringing Rubashkin down before any such fraud even existed. All bank loans and payments were made on time with no issues or problems with the bank at the time Judge Reade got involved with the case. Please stay informed if you wish to comment. All the issues and problems happened after the goverment backed them into a corner and climbed up his tuchus. .

14

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