Annabi-Jereis Corruption Court Case: Mangone Reveals the Lack of Integrity in the Westchester Integrity Committee By HEZI ARIS

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Cash Exchanged; Feathers Ruffled; A New Political Reality

NEW YORK, NY and YONKERS, NY — Anthony Mangone, the one-time attorney, disbarred since the Spring of 2011, took to the witness stand in Judge Colleen McMahon’s courtroom today as part of the government’s alleged charges of corruption and bribery against defendants Sandy Annabi, former Yonkers City Councilwoman, and Zehy Jereis, former Yonkers Republican Chairman. Of the many issues covered in the early interrogation of Mr Mangone by Anthony Siano, Mr Jereis’ legal counsel, was the episode in which in the year 2006, then Senator Nick Spano was running as the incumbent for New York State Senate against Andrea Stewart-Cousins.

Senator Nick Spano needed to gain the support of minor party lines in order to enhance his chances for winning in a New York State Senate District that was regarded to have an overwhelming roster of registered voters who saw themselves more closely affiliated with the Democratic Party line. The only way to reign in the imbalance of voters registered to the one party, was for then Senator Nick Spano to seek support from the other minority party lines. He sought out the Conservative Party, the Independence Party, the Working Families Party, the Right to Life party, and any other party lines that may have existed.

As the election campaign efforts from every facet of the political spectrum would heat up, it was recognized that forces involved in the Westchester County Independence Party were undergoing internal strife. An internal heierarchy of protagonists were plotting a coup d’état in order to wrestle the party chair, Dr. Giulio Cavallo, from continuing to maintain political control.

The “mutineers,” who considered themselves reformers to the alleged “corruption” of Dr Cavallo, coalesced around the well-known, and well-respected educator Nader Sayegh, in a reorganization effort that had the likes of John Khader, owner of Top Class Limousine, Joseph Spezio III, a Yonkers developer, Michael Gianatasio, one-time candidate challenging Suzie Oppenheimer in a NYS Senate race, Steven Sacripanti, an ally who had been Administrative Judge Francis Nicolai’s principal court reporter, Dyalma Vasquez, a political supporter and confidante, Irma Drace, secretary to State Supreme Court Justice Joseph Alessandro, Jeff Buss, Esq., of the Yonkers law firm of Smith, Buss & Jacobs LLP, Sam Zherka, publisher of The Westchester Guardian, and Delfim Heusler, publisher of the online Yonkers Insider.

The integrity expressed in words would soon dissipate due to a lack of deeds and vitriole and infighting among the "reformers." Before the exchange of any money took place, Mssrs Zherka and Heusler excised themselves from further involvement with the Westchester Integrity Committee.

The unexpressed tenets of the Westchester Integrity Committee was to cause the collapse of Dr. Cavallo’s hold on the Westchester Independence Party so that those who maintained their political challenge and focus could wrestle control of the reigns of power from Dr Cavallo and deliver the party to Senator Nick Spano. But that was hush hush.

Mr Mangone admitted in court that he asked Milio Management through son Franco Milio, and with full knowledge of founder and father to Franco, Antonio Milio, that cash was required to satisfy the alleged desire of Sandy Annabi and Zehy Jereis to develop the Longfellow Junior High School, Walgreens, School 6 properties as “designated developers” for their behalf.

Mr Antonio Milio, who delivered four rubber band bundled stacks of $100 bills amounting to $10,000 per bundle, to Mr Mangone, then an attorney, instead used some of the money he garnered, that from the Milio’s, from gambling wins, from client payments made in cash and never reported, but divided among the law firm’s partners, and client escrow accounts, intended to thwart the Westchester County Independence Party from being overthrown by Dr Sayegh winning a challenge against Dr Cavallo. Before an intended $10,000 cash payment could be given to “bribe” and dissuade the Westchester integrity Committee to discontinue their challenge, Dr Sayegh dropped out of the race. Dr Sayegh was played by Nader Sayegh who was engaged in getting petitions for placing the Westchester integrity Committee  in contention to challenge Dr Cavallo's Westchester Independence Party. The petitions garnered where chanllenged and found to be fraudulent and were disallowed. 

Recognizing Dr. Sayegh was no longer a viable threat, Mr Mangone figured he could pay off Mr Khader $5,000, though it was said in those days to have been as much as $15,000. Nevertheless,  Mr Mangone gave Mr Khader $5,000 in cash, and kept the balance for himself.

The $5,000 payment received by Mr Khader would unravel the supposedly close-knit political wannabees of the Westchester integrity Committee. Each individual, to some degree or another, were obsessed with accusing each other of theft of the money they expected to share equally. Mr Mangone got most of the cash and Mr Khader some of it,  and Senator Nick Spano lost the political challenge to Andrea Stewart-Cousins, the present incumbent senator of the district.

MORE…..on Friday…

eHeziAnnabi-Jereis Corruption Court Case: Mangone Reveals the Lack of Integrity in the Westchester Integrity Committee By HEZI ARIS

Comments 26

  1. i think that is completly false. Joe has done well and is respected in the City by many and was once honored for his actions. He sits on some of the most prestigous boards in Yomkers and is successful.
    Being jealous willot rssolve anything but I have benefited by joe and his action with CBA and we applaud him.
    Stop passing on false information and also remeber he started the downtown and is the only one to reap the benefits.
    Any negative publicatins was done by those who lost battles against him and it also fces many business people but to spread rumors is outright wrong and if you have facts spell them out and or sign your name so that he can sue and get an apology like he got from all others who went down ts path.
    Why not look at the real issues if you understand them.

  2. Why chime in without facts. That is yonkers chattrs problem everyone makes statements and rumors wi facts.
    Spiezio did more for yonkers and helped more people than most and the haters exist based upon jealousy and nothing more. He is self made and make more money than most in the downtown.
    Time to get your facts cleared and now the rest of the gang may have issues but without fcts no need to comment.

  3. Wow what a group! Let me begin by saying that I hate corruption and I hate the Spanos and all that they represent.
    BUT REALLY that is the “INTEGRITY” group?????
    Joe Spezio?????????????
    Santo Agostino???????????
    Do we need to go on with the issues involved with each of the members of this committee. Shame for using the word integrity. Shame Shame Shame.

  4. This group is dedicated to cleansing our electoral system and reforming the Westchester Independence Party. The Yonkers Insider is proud to be a member of The Westchester Integrity Committee and thanks the group for including him their fight for reform and ending the reign of Team Corruption.
    This group is made up of reformers like: Nader Sayegh, John Khader, Joe Spiezio, Mike Gianatasio, James Dibbini, Sam Zherka, Steve Sacripanti, Cesar Ruiz, Lewis Gjelaj, Santo Agostino, Mike Khader and countless other fighters for reforming our electoral system and the Westchester County Independence Party.
    It is The Yonkers Insider’s belief that victory will soon come to The Westchester Integrity Committee and in doing so, will return democracy and the rule of law to the Westchester County Independence Party as well. This group will bring a new day with an open nominating process and will not be like the days of Cavallo running the Party like his own personal possession and piggy bank. Also it will end the party for sale to the highest bidder and it will also give the party a breath of fresh air and not the current smell that have with Cavallo and Team Corruption. The New Independence Party under the new regime will hear all points of view and will not have a leader ruling with a iron hand, the trademark of Cavallo. We will also not have a leader who will state that he is the tail wagging the dog, like Cavallo did. Honor will be returned to this party with the team of The Westchester Integrity Committee. The Legal Re-Org will happen. This is Cavallo and Team Corruption’s worst nightmare. The battle will be in the streets and Cavallo will lose that battle, because he doesn’t have the troops to win this battle.
    In closing, I think of two men, who always fought for Integrity in our electoral system and that was The Late Ralph Martinelli – Publisher of the Home News and Times and my friend – The Late James Wieland. They must be proud of The Westchester Integrity Committee group and are smiling from where they are watching from. This was the Yonkers Insider’s mission with his friend The Late James Wieland to end the reign of Cavallo and Team Corruption for the last six years and is happy to be part of this elite group and reform movement.
    Source of committee list: Westchester Integrity Committee Website – http://www.westchesterintegrity.com.
    WESTCHESTER INTEGRITY COMMITTEE
    ******************************************
    Executive Committee
    Nader J. Sayegh, Esq. – Chairman
    James Dibbini, Esq. – 1st Vice Chairman
    Ceasar Ruiz – Treasurer
    Dominica Rodriguez O’Neill – Secretary
    Regional Vice Chairmen
    Michael R. Gianatasio
    Sam Zherka
    Lewis Gjelaj
    John Khader
    Steve Sacripanti
    Advisors to the Committee
    Joseph F. Spiezio, III
    Santo Agostino
    Abder Ibrahim
    Members of the Committee
    Delfim Heusler
    Shadi Khader
    Michael Lehrer
    Jean Mieli
    Susan Sanchez-Sayegh
    Alecia Corso
    Athena Akoma
    Chandra Sookdeo
    *******************************************
    Our Mission
    To elevate Independence Candidates by ridding the current corrupt leadership of the Westchester County Independence Party and its contributors and by reducing the office holders to the servants of the people they were intended to be;
    To create a countywide political party committed to the elimination of the electoral advantages of incumbency and the creation of a level playing field for the candidates of the Independence Party;
    To restore fiscally responsible Independence Party and government, where the county, city, town and village budgets spend only what the voters are willing to pay in taxes;
    To restore a political party committed to the highest standards of quality in every aspect of the party — representation, organization, campaigning, elections, fund raising, and participation;
    To encourage voter participation and involvement, both in the party itself and in the political process as a whole.
    SOURCE: The YonkersInsider

  5. The trial will end this political error and a few more collateral casualties will come out of this hopefully.
    There are still a few party leaders that are either cooperating or are about to fall and then we will have a better system in place when they ger replaced.
    Out with the old and in with the new

  6. get lost truth you are talking nonsense…charles
    blow had a great op ed in the times today (sundays
    edition) about rick santorum’s religious views
    he quoted james madison who makes santorum look like
    a nut job on the issue of separation of church and
    state..and unfortunately people like mike long
    subscribe to the same 1950’s view of the world…
    the other op ed by joe nocera pleads for the nomination
    of rick santorum so the republican party can experience
    what the democrats went through after mcgovern..there
    is no republican party right now …just a mangle
    of tea party know nothings libertarian children and
    ideological fox news crackpots…after they take
    the beating they deserve the party will ignore those
    who think rick santorum is the answer

  7. Things might get better when Mike “John Birch” Long retires to a trailer in Alabama….
    Just because you are “Conservative” does not mean you hate everyone different from you. It is time to grow up. Its the economy stupid.

  8. it has to be done at the state level…so andrea
    stewart cousins for example could easily introduce
    it so could any one of the demoratic assemblymen
    the problem is passage the state senate is composed
    of republicans who rely on the conservative party
    endorsment…and they are unlikely to do what is needed
    but this goes all the way back to jim buckley and
    dan mahoney who formed the conservative party in
    the 60’s to beat charles goddell and jake javits
    however social issues were not on their radar back then
    and now its killing republicans just look at the national scene

  9. I agree with you anon. Can’t the County Board ask for a referendum to “outlaw” cross endorsements? Doesn’t Nassau or Suffolk County have this prohibition? You would think the democratic majority would love this idea!
    No more tail wagging the dog.

  10. buy has lots of different meanings…for example
    “contribute x amount of dollars to our dinner
    and you can get the nomination” or give x and y
    jobs and you can have the line..or let our political
    consultant buy your tv and you can have the line…
    the point is when minor parties are allowed to cross
    endorse it opens the door to political extortion…
    it is hard to blame the candidates because they
    are forced to play this game and its why cross endorsements must be abolished…only 6 states allow
    the practice and unfortunately ny is one of them
    whether its mike long at the state level or
    julio cavalo at the local level you cannot allow a minor party to set the agenda for a major one

  11. Let me get this right. In the US in 2012 one can “BUY” a party line in an election. How crazy is that? No how corrupt is that?

  12. one salient point..if minor parties could not
    cross endorse then 1. it would eliminate the potential for selling a line to the highest bidder 2. major
    party candidate could run without compromising their
    positions based on minor party demands 3.the minor
    parties would go out of business

  13. Faithful service to the political and patronage cronies. Gail Burns& Wilson Kimball are two prime examples of business as usual in the the Mike Spano administration-nothing changes with these pols.

  14. To be fair, it also means that what both Rob Astorino did in 2009 and the Conservative reorganization led by Hugh Fox and Sam Terenzi in 2010(including, Vincenza Restiano, Bob Fois, Kevin Reilly, Rose Marie Jarosz, Nick Bianco, Charlie Duffy, Sue Swanson, Evelyn Kahlow, Irving Scharff, Mike Barrett, Ed Fagan, the Right To Life movement and MANY other unsung heroes) has to be now viewed as more than a little triumph.
    It was a gosh darn miracle.
    Bravo, my friends. We knew it first.
    We were all up against fixed elections and still won.

  15. Federal monitors estimate that most elections in America have at least four percent (4%) of fraud. Attorneys monitoring Westchester’s elections have told me that number is as high as eight percent (8%) in Yonkers and Mount Vernon.
    If Mangone’s claims of fraud were standard operating procedure in Westchester, potentially every election in this county since November of 1995 has been fixed.
    Since party committee reorganizations with proxies (and the election of the district leaders who represent those proxies) are often decided election district by election district in primaries by ONE VOTE, it basically means everything could have been fixed.
    Everything.
    Which laughably by itself means that all these supposed successful candidates, party leaders and political consultants walking around back slapping each other are one big pathetic joke.
    I hope I’m not the only lost soul who gets the humor of these follies.

  16. I stand corrected.
    Constituent Services Director is the position
    for Ms. Burns after many years of faithful service.
    Mea Culpa

  17. Spano didn’t need to seek out the support of the Conservative Party, because Gail Burns (the current Chief of Staff in Yonkers) was the head of this party and simultaneously in the Senator’s employ on his staff at that time.

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