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Astoria Hosts Music Festival

Friday, July 24, 2009

astoriamusicnow

Astoria, Queens will be rocking out this weekend...

The Astoria Music and Arts Association is hosting its second annual Music Now festival this Saturday. The event is a celebration of the music, art, and culture of Queens residents. The ...

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Lawrence McDonald on The Fall of Lehman Brothers

Friday, July 24, 2009

Lawrence McDonald, former Lehman Brothers vice president, explains what happened at Lehman Brothers and why the financial services firm was allowed to fail. In A Colossal Failure of Common Sense: The Inside Story of the ...

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Massive Corruption Arrests in NJ

Thursday, July 23, 2009

A group of unidentified handcuffed men are walked outside FBI offices Thursday, July 23, 2009, in Newark, N.J.. to a waiting bus for transport to court hearing as part of a major corruption and international money laundering conspiracy probe. (AP/Mel Evans)

A group of unidentified handcuffed men are walked outside FBI offices Thursday, July 23, 2009, in Newark, N.J.. to a waiting bus for transport to court hearing as part of a major corruption and international money laundering conspiracy probe. (AP/Mel Evans)

Federal officials announced further details of a major investigation into corruption and money laundering in New Jersey and Brooklyn.

As part of an ongoing, 10-year investigation, FBI agents arrested dozens of people this morning, including the mayors of Hoboken and Secaucus, as well as the deputy mayor and council president of Jersey City.

A federal prosecutor says the money-laundering arrests include several rabbis in Brooklyn and New Jersey. A congregant of a synagogue in Deal, New Jersey, says he witnessed FBI agents removing boxes from the Deal Yeshiva this morning.

In addition to the corruption and money laundering charges, is one detailing a kidney-trafficking racket. The accused trafficker, Brooklyn-based Levy Rosenbaum, allegedly obtained kidneys from Israeli donors at the cost of $10,000 apiece and sold them for as much as $160,000.

A cooperating witness who had been charged with bank fraud in May 2006 was named in all 29 of the criminal complaints released by the U.S. District Court.

WNYC reporter Bob Hennelly discusses the arrest on All Things Considered.

A group of unidentifed men are walked outside FBI offices Thursday, July 23, 2009, in Newark, N.J.. to a waiting bus for transport to court hearing. (AP/Mel Evans)

A group of unidentifed men are walked outside FBI offices Thursday, July 23, 2009, in Newark, N.J.. to a waiting bus for transport to court hearing. (AP/Mel Evans)

U.S. Attorney's Office Press Release (PDF)

Some of those charged:

Peter Cammarano III, the newly elected mayor of Hoboken and an attorney, charged with accepting $25,000 in cash bribes, including $10,000 last Thursday, from an undercover cooperating witness.

L. Harvey Smith, a New Jersey Assemblyman and recent mayoral candidate in Jersey City, charged along with an aide of taking $15,000 in bribes to help get approvals from high-level state agency officials for building projects.

Daniel Van Pelt, a New Jersey Assemblyman, charged with accepting a $10,000 bribe.

Dennis Elwell, mayor of Secaucus, charged with taking a $10,000 cash bribe.

Anthony Suarez, mayor of Ridgefield and an attorney, charged with agreeing to accept a $10,000 corrupt cash payment for his legal defense fund.

Louis Manzo, the recent unsuccessful challenger in the Jersey City mayoral election and former state Assemblyman, and his brother and political advisor Robert Manzo, both with taking $27,500 in corrupt cash payments for use in Louis Manzo’s campaign.

Leona Beldini, the Jersey City deputy mayor and a campaign treasurer, charged with taking $20,000 in conduit campaign contributions and other self-dealing in her official capacity.

Eliahu Ben Haim, of Long Branch, N.J., the principal rabbi of a synagogue in Deal, N.J., charged with money laundering of proceeds derived from criminal activity.

Saul Kassin, of Brooklyn, N.Y., the chief rabbi of a synagogue in Brooklyn, New York, charged with money laundering of proceeds derived from criminal activity.

Edmund Nahum, of Deal, N.J., the principal rabbi of a synagogue in Deal, charged with money laundering of proceeds derived from criminal activity.

Mordchai Fish, of Brooklyn, N.Y., a rabbi at a synagogue in Brooklyn, charged with money laundering of proceeds derived from criminal activity. His brother, also a rabbi, was charged as well.

Names, ages, charges for each defendant (PDF)

Complaints: (PDFs)

U.S.A. v. Daniel M. Van Pelt

U.S.A. v. Peter Cammarano III, Michael Schaffer

U.S.A. v. Jack Shaw, Edward Cheatam, Leona Beldini

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Blessing the Dragons

Thursday, July 23, 2009

[nggallery id=108]
Parks Commissioner Adrian Benepe christened some dragons in Central Park today...Well, he took part in the traditional Chinese blessing of dragon boats preparing for next month's 19th annual Hong Kong Dragon Boat Festival in Queens.

The festival's feature events are races between the 38-foot-long, ...

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The Naked Cowboy Launches Mayoral Bid

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Watch out Mayor Bloomberg!

Times Square street performer The Naked Cowboy (aka Robert John Burck) launched his campaign for Mayor of New York City this morning with a speech and a song. His promise: "To do more with less."

The announcement was a media circus with journalists ...

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Bloomberg, Chamberlain, et al.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

From left to right: Neville Chamberlain, Édouard Daladier, Adolf Hitler, Benito Mussolini, before signing the Munich Agreement, September 29, 1938.

From left to right: Neville Chamberlain, Édouard Daladier, Adolf Hitler, Benito Mussolini, before signing the Munich Agreement, September 29, 1938.

Since there's been

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40 Years Later: Walking on the Moon

Monday, July 20, 2009

The Brian Lehrer Show

Brian Lehrer celebrates the 40th anniversary of the Apollo 11 mission with recordings of the moon landing and President Richard Nixon's conversation with Buzz Aldrin and Neil Armstrong. Listeners add memories of the moon walk and thoughts on space exploration.

The Leonard Lopate Show

...

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'Los Cuatro Amigos'... The Four Friends?

Monday, July 20, 2009

[slideshow id=104]
With the issue of mayoral control of schools hanging in the balance, State Senators Ruben Diaz, Sr., Pedro Espada, Jr., Hiram Monserrate and Carl Kruger met for lunch to publicly discuss the amendments they want included in the controversial legislation. The group wants a parent training center ...

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Malachy McCourt Remembers His Brother

Monday, July 20, 2009

(Getty)

(Getty)

Pulitzer-Prize winning author Frank McCourt passed away this weekend. Malachy McCourt joins Leonard Lopate to talk about his older brother’s life and accomplishments.

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Minor League Baseball or Law School? A Sotomayor Diary

Friday, July 17, 2009

diary

Reporter by Marianne McCune and Zila Acosta

Supreme Court nominee Sonia Sotomayor captured the attention of millions of Americans during her confirmation hearings this week. Twenty-year-old Zila Acosta comes from a part-Puerto Rican, part-Dominican family. Her mother is a ...

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Brooklyn's Fishing Contest Underway

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

fishing

The sun is out, the sky is clear, the wind is blowing a light breeze...and it's a great day to go fishing.

Prospect Park has launched its 62nd annual kids fishing contest. From Wednesday through Sunday children will get to ...

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Number 7 Is Number 1

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

The Straphangers Campaign annual ranking of the city's 22 major subway lines comes out today. The Number 7 line, between Flushing, Queens, and Times Square, takes the lead for its frequent service, clean cars and availability of seats during rush hour. The Number 7 beat out the defending champion L ...

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NYC Streets: Pedestrian Friendly Or Deadly?

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Transportation Alternatives, an advocacy group, is recommending City Hall do a better job of enforcing city traffic laws that protect pedestrians. Wiley Norvell, the group's spokesman, says not enough is done to punish reckless drivers.

Norvell says he wants to see more resources dedicated to safer traffic control, ...

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WNYC to Acquire WQXR

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

q

>>FAQ from WNYC's Listener Services

WNYC to Acquire Classical Station in Three-Way Deal
WNYC News
You could think of it as a game of musical chairs involving The New York Times, Spanish language broadcaster Univision, ...

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Sonia Sotomayor Confirmation Hearings: Day 3

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

(Getty Images)

(Getty Images)

Listen live to the hearings starting at 10am

The Senate Judiciary Committee begins confirmation Monday on the nomination of Judge Sonia Sotomayor to the Supreme Court. Most analysts ...

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Jane Jacobs Way

Monday, July 13, 2009

[slideshow id=102]
A block of Hudson Street in the West Village has been named "Jane Jacobs Way" in honor of the urban planning activist who fought to preserve the neighborhood by campaigning for sidewalks and against highways.
Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer says Jacobs' spirit and vision are ...

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Judge Sotomayor Confirmation Hearings Day 1

Monday, July 13, 2009

Supreme Court nominee judge Sonia Sotomayor (R) with Sen. Al Franken (D-MN) (L). Confirmation hearing for Sotomayor start July 13. (Getty Images)

Supreme Court nominee judge Sonia Sotomayor (R) with Sen. Al Franken (D-MN) (L). Confirmation hearing for Sotomayor start July 13. ...

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Is Sotomayor Hispanic or Latino?

Monday, July 13, 2009

by Alex Goldmark and Janaya Williams

With Supreme Court confirmation hearings for Judge Sonia Sotomayor starting next week, be prepared for the words "Hispanic" and "Latino" to scroll across the bottom of your TV a lot! She is set to be the first Latina on the Court, or ...

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Meet the Mayor of the Block

Friday, July 10, 2009

gn_storefront
by Alex Goldmark and Janaya Williams

Meet the Mayor of Columbia Street, Brooklyn.

We know, we know, Mike Bloomberg is the mayor of New York, and Cory Booker presides over Newark, New Jersey. But we’re talking more local than that! So ...

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Hazel Dukes on the NAACP: Past and Future

Friday, July 10, 2009

dukes

Hazel Dukes, President of the NAACP New York State Conference, discusses the one hundredth anniversary of the NAACP, the organization’s history and future on the Leonard Lopate Show.

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