Tuesday, January 12, 2016

Is this comparable to the the Kaminetsky-Greenblatt heter? Former Judge Is Convicted of Bribery in Divorce Court

A former State Supreme Court judge was convicted yesterday of accepting bribes to manipulate the outcome of divorce proceedings in a case that led to a broad political and judicial corruption inquiry in Brooklyn.

The judge, Gerald P. Garson, 74, could face as many as 15 years in prison if he is sentenced consecutively on the three guilty verdicts, on bribery and two lesser charges. The jury acquitted him on four other counts after a four-week trial in State Supreme Court in Brooklyn.

In his roughly five years on the bench in Brooklyn, Mr. Garson handled nearly 1,100 matrimony cases, making decisions on child custody and financial matters. In finding him guilty, the jury endorsed the prosecution theory that he had an agreement with a divorce lawyer to take cash, dinners and cigars in exchange for courtroom assignments and favored treatment. [...]

Mr. Garson was first charged in 2003, along with the divorce lawyer, Paul Siminovsky, as well as one of his clients, a court officer, a former clerk and a man described as a fixer. All six were charged with felonies.

The case immediately reverberated throughout Brooklyn, from playpens and dinner tables to the upper echelons of politics. Divorce cases were reopened. Judges feared that their offices were wired for surveillance. The system of nominating judges was ruled unconstitutional.[...]

“Finally, we have justice,” said Frieda Hanimov, whose divorce case was handled by Mr. Garson and who wore a surveillance device to collect evidence against him. Adding that she and other victims were planning civil lawsuits, she said, “Now hopefully they’re going to learn and realize we have corruption everywhere.”


  1. This corruption was known by lawyers well before that judge was arrested and the case made public.

    Honest lawyers (yes, there are some) were avoiding taking cases in brooklyn at the time. The court administrators knew full well about it, but ignored. It was notin their 'interest' to make known corruption public.

    And the DA cooperated. Instead of charging the judge with extortion (which it really was), they kept the accusations 'in house' by charging only a particular payoff case.

    More later.

  2. As i recall, the judge only gota sentence of like 18 months. Not such a big deal.

  3. Yes, that’s our judge, Gerald Garson, who fined me $5,000
    for opening my mouth, in Aranoff v. Aranoff.
    Hey, maybe, I’ll get back my house and 55% of my pension, God willing.

  4. Why is your case still active decades after your divorce?

  5. No it's different. Here it was more a bias that has clouded R Shmuel and R Not a judgment
    Don't think they would take an outright bribe.
    Doesn't make them right, but have to be careful what we accuse them of.

  6. Other corruption case: a shopping center mogul was divorcing his (obviously money grubbing wife). The wife's then boyfriend mentioned in his testimony that the judge was corrupt. The boyfriend happened to have been an expert in corruption, having lost his US senate seat because he was caught taking bribes.

    I met the ex wife a few years ago, and she confirmed to me that she nor her (by then ex, but they were still platonic friends) ex boyfriend were never interviewed or approached by any investigators regarding the corruption testimony.

    The NY court system is not interested in investigating corruption, just covering up.

    Just like the american bet din system.

  7. Moe Ginsburg “Why is your case still active decades
    after your divorce?”

    Lies lies, e.g. from
    transcript Index No. 54688/2012 August 1, 2013 before Honorable Eric I. Prus,
    Justice. Appearances: Tittone &
    Serlin...by Myla Serlin, Esq. Defendant not present at the proceedings, page 3:

    THE COURT: What he
    says here, my main reason is that I already divorced Susan February 17th,
    1993. That was a religious divorce. MS.
    SERLIN:It was a religious divorce in Israel without participation or knowledge
    of my client [lie—Susan initiated and participated with help of Mendel Epstein
    and Rabbi Ralbag]. THE COURT:
    Right. There were no issues involving
    equitable distribution? MS. SERLIN: There is a marital residence. That is the one and only issue. The separation agreement that they entered
    into [lie—never was a separation agreement], and there is a separation before,
    gives exclusive possession to my client. THE COURT: What does it say as far as
    equitable distribution of that? MS. SERLIN: He’s silent. THE COURT: And what
    was acquired? MS. SERLIN: The house was acquired in 1976. THE COURT: And when
    did he -- MS. SERLIN:He abandoned the property in 1991 [lie].

  8. There was also a famous incident of the judge hearing (bess myerson's daughter's) divorce was caught getting a 'job' for the judge's daughter. All they did was change the judge, but keep her rulings.

  9. Child's play compared to how things work in Shlomo Zalman Kauffman's Beis Din in Monsey.

    Difference is that in the non-Jewish system, when it's discovered, there are sometimes consequences.


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