Thursday, May 07, 2009

Top Dem fundraiser pleads guilty

The AP reports that Norman Hsu has pleaded guilty to bilking investors (10 counts of wire and mail fraud) and is awaiting trial for violating campaign-finance laws:
Former top Democratic fundraiser Norman Hsu pleaded guilty in federal court Thursday to charges he cheated investors out of at least $20 million in a massive Ponzi scheme. ....

Assistant U.S. Attorney Katherine Lemire told Marrero that the government will seek to prove that Hsu made political donations "to fuel" the Ponzi scheme and pressured victims of his fraud to contribute to political candidates. ....

[Hsu's lawyer Alan] Seidler said Hsu considered Hillary Rodham Clinton his biggest prize among political candidates. ....

Hsu was accused of raising more than $1.2 million for Clinton and other Democratic candidates. His donations became an embarrassment for Clinton's presidential campaign. ....

Hsu was indicted in 2007 on charges of swindling $20 million from victims in what the government described as a $60 million Ponzi scheme that lasted from 2000 until August 2007. ....

He posted $2 million bail and missed a court appearance a week after his initial arrest. He fled by train and was arrested at a Colorado hospital after attempting suicide. He has remained imprisoned since.

In January 2008, he was sentenced to three years in prison after a judge refused to toss out his 1992 plea to the fraud charge.

UPDATE: Hsu has been convicted of violating campaign finance laws. The AP reports what he did and the praise he received from Hillary:

During the trial that began May 12, television actress Susan Chilman testified that she given nearly $42,000 to Clinton and other Democratic candidates. Once she took out her checkbook, Hsu would simply give her a name and an amount, then later reimburse her, said Chilman, who's had roles in "Brothers & Sisters," "CSI Miami" and "ER" under the stage name Susan Pari.

Jurors also heard testimony from several other investors who recounted how Hsu showed off his political connections by decorating his home with photos of himself with marquee Democrats. One witness testified she met President Barack Obama, Secretary of State Clinton, President Bill Clinton, Sen. John Kerry, Sen. Ted Kennedy and Rep. Patrick Kennedy of Rhode Island at fundraisers she attended with him. Prosecutors played a voicemail recording of Clinton, then a senator, effusively praising Hsu for his loyal support.

"I've never seen anybody who has been more loyal and more effective and really just having greater success supporting someone than you," she told him. "Everywhere I go, you're there. If you're not, you're sending people to be part of my events. You know, we're going to win this campaign, Norman, because you single-handedly are going to make that happen."

PREVIOUSLY on the subject of Ponzi schemes, there was Bernie Madoff who was also a major donor to left/liberal causes. R. Allan Stanford is charged with scamming his clients out of $8 billion and, though not as partisan as Madoff or Hsu, "a lot of [Stanford's] money went - straight into the coffers of the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee (DSCC)."

No comments:

Clicky Web Analytics