Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Divorce strategy: Wives try to use racketeering law against rich husbands in court

NY Post  These rich wives have at least one thing in common with John Gotti — they know their RICO laws inside and out.

The well-heeled wives are trying to use the federal Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act — which famously took down the Teflon Don — to nail their wealthy husbands during divorce battles.

The women claim that their husbands have hidden away cash that they have a right to — and they are trying to use the federal racketeering law to grab the dough.

While RICO was enacted in 1970 “to get to corrupt families under the name of the Mafia, there’s a certain symmetry [with divorce cases] because oftentimes . . . you have the corrupt spouse in cahoots with others, often family members or paramours,’’ said family-law expert Michael Stutman.</ Patricia Cohen, the ex-wife of billionaire Steven Cohen, pioneered the tactic in 2009. [...]

A judge tossed the civil RICO charge last year — but that hasn’t stopped at least six more New York and New Jersey women from using the statute in a similar way. One of Stutman’s clients, Rivky Stein, brought a RICO suit against her ex, Yoel Weiss, in Brooklyn. Stein alleged that Weiss laundered money from an illegal importing business through his aunt and uncle’s plumbing supply company so he could claim poverty to the matrimonial judge.

Brooklyn federal court Judge Brian Cogan tossed the case, finding that the people whose merchandise was stolen, not Stein, were the RICO victims.


  1. The other RICO that should be investigated is the Recklessness Involving Community Organizations that knowingly or unknowingly are breaking up saveable marriages in the name of receiving more government funding for single mothers and their children.

  2. http://nypost.com/2015/02/10/i-checked-into-the-divorce-hotel-to-check-out-of-my-marriage/


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