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In 1988, after Weinstock battled and survived cancer, severe side effects from chemotherapy and a heart attack, he inquired from CGS&H about the properties. CGS&H, through George Weisz, Esq., a senior partner repeatedly falsely responded in various letters and under oath, that the status quo had been maintained and that CGS&H had fully complied with its written assurances given to Weinstock. Walker, Handler, CGS&H, and SS&D were confident that Weinstock would succumb to his illness before he would discover that the foregoing sworn statements of compliance were false. But when Weinstock stubbornly refused to die for Handler's benefit, he went to Court in June, 1988, seeking to have a judge order CGS&H come clean and tell what it knew about the 4200 Avenue K properties it had plainly and repeatedly lied about. Weisz's sole defense for the CGS&H was, in effect, the epitome of arrogance and power: Hey! We're Cleary Gottlieb. How dare that peon accuse us? And that was enough for Brooklyn Justice Jerome D. Cohen, who denied the motion without even bothering to read the papers submitted by either side. [In light of these events, it would hardly be surprising to learn that Judge Cohen, who was previously indicted, was tossed off the bench by the New York Court of Appeals a mere three days after deciding the motion. It found that Cohen obtained no-interest and lower than market interest loans from a specific Credit Union, in exchange for ordering litigants whose cases he was hearing, and especially minors, to put the winnings from their cases into the Credit Union in exchange for ordering litigants whose cases he was hearing, and especially minors, to put the winnings from their cases into the Credit Union. Though the court found removal was "rarely warranted" and only justified in "the most egregious circumstances" it did not hesitate in Cohen's case, finding his excuses "unconvincing" and that he "acted as if his decisions could be influenced by personal gain " because the "appearance diminishes public confidence in the integrity of the judiciary and destroys [Cohen's] usefulness on the bench."]. In a blatant display of defiance and denial, CGS&H attorneys stated as recently as 1998, that the title to the properties was still in the corporation. It is a matter of public record that the corporation was stripped of its properties in 1987, when Weinstock was unable to defend himself due to his illness.
Upon Weinstock's painstaking recovery, he discovered that the corporation had indeed been stripped of its assets and that the affidavits given by George Weisz and CGS&H were completely and utterly false. What is true is that Handler had given the bank a false certification and Roth had forged the deed to the properties when transferring them from Realty Corp. to a partnership. CGS&H knowingly and exponentially provided Weinstock and the Courts with false statements denying that the corporation had been stripped of its assets and by representing to Weinstock and the courts that the status quo had been maintained, as CGS&H had promised, in writing.
Justice With One Eye Closed
There was documentary evidence showing the transgressions committed by CGS&H and SS&D that proved the falsity of their positions and their participatory roles in the fraud. Weinstock commenced a lawsuit in Federal Court in Manhattan against CGS&H, SS&D, and the other perpetrators. CGS&H felt compelled to bring in a hired gun of their own. Bernard Nussbaum, Esq. (who later served as Special Counsel to President Clinton), was called in to represent CGS&H in the proceedings. Nussbaum's job was to reroute the case back to Brooklyn judge Richard D Huttner, who had accepted the lies of CGS&H favorably. The Handler camp and Nussbaum had contributed at least 5% of Judge' Huttner's campaign for his judgeship. That Judge Huttner [later found to have "displayed a remarkable insensitivity to his ethical responsibilities and to the ethical problems created by his actions" when he took an active role in litigation involving his own cooperative apartment board and also held to have "recognized that such heavy-handed communications convey the unseemly impression that the cooperative was using his judicial status to advance its position in ... litigation," Judge Huttner was censured by the Commission on Judicial Conduct for violating 5 different Rules Governing Judicial Conduct, all of them relating to judicial integrity and extracurricular activities, and told this: "The ethical rules prohibit a judge from lending the prestige of judicial office to advance private interests and from engaging in extra-judicial activities that are incompatible with judicial office or detract from the dignity of judicial office" ] was not the one who would eventually decide this case. He would later assign it to his colleague, Justice Lewis Douglass. Before the matter was returned by the Federal Court to the State Court, two of CGS&H's senior partners called Weinstock to see if Weinstock would meet with them. On the spot, they offered Weinstock approximately $1 million dollars for his release. They suggested that Weinstock continue his case against Handler from whom, they said, he would eventually get his buildings back. Weinstock stood his ground and refused the offer. Handler, as stated above, had already mortgaged the properties for $3.8 million dollars. After Weinstock's refusal, the two senior partners from CGS&H threatened to turn Weinstock's life "inside out". Undaunted, Weinstock remained firm in his position, knowing that only a re-writing of documented history could possibly save CGS&H, SS&D, Handler and Walker from criminal prosecution.
Back to the Future
A rewrite of history is precisely what happened. Justice Lewis Douglass of the Supreme Court, Kings County (Brooklyn) declared that Handler was at "all times the owner of 100% of "Realty Corp.". Handler had only asked the Court to declare him owner of 48% of the corporation. As previously mentioned, Handler had given testimony to the various percentages of ownership, and the way he had obtained the said percentages. Under oath. To overcome the documentary and testimonial evidence that Handler was never the owner of any stock in the "Realty Corp.", Handler, "explained" that he had previously lied and caused others to lie in order to hide his interest in "Realty Corp.". In order to make his finding, Justice Douglass had to accept Handler's "explanations" that he had consistently lied and caused others to perjure themselves in order to conceal his interest in Realty Corp. To overcome the overwhelming documentary evidence that Handler did not own any interest in Realty Corp., the judge had to ignore the testimony of the attorney who had handled the original transaction for "Realty Corp.", and who had testified in "Realty Corp's" case against the seller, that only Walker and Pfeffer were the stockholders of "Realty Corp." Walker later purchased Pfeffer's interest in "Realty Corp." In order to make the finding that Handler was at all times "the owner of 100% of "Realty Corp." Justice Douglass had to also retroactively strip Weinstock of the 20%, which the sworn complaint prepared by CGS&H had admitted was given to Weinstock for legal fees rendered. Justice Douglass had to attribute the evaluation of the corporate stock which was achieved only after Weinstock's success in the Appellate Division and had to ignore the evaluation of the stock at the time that Walker assigned it Weinstock.
Justice Douglass went on to declare that the 20%, "standing alone" was a reasonable fee. But, because of Weinstock's alleged "unconscionable" conduct toward Walker (which Walker had admitted was contrived by Handler); the 20%fee should be retroactively forfeited. With this declaration, Justice Douglass unwittingly established that Handler filed a fraudulent application for the mortgage loan of $3.8 Million and committed a fraud on the bank as he had certified that between himself and his partner Roth they owned 100% of the corporation. But at that time, according to Justice Douglass, Weinstock had 20% of the Realty Corp. which was only subsequently "retroactively" forfeited. Additionally, CGS&H had wrongfully permitted and then covered up the fraudulent loan. But what is most important is that Justice Douglass ignored Walker's admissions under oath, that the allegations of misconduct on Weinstock's part were totally fabricated at the request of Handler and his attorneys. The decision by Justice Douglass did not have a rippling and trickle down effect; it opened the floodgates and crippled due process. It retroactively legitimized Handler's false mortgage application to the First Nationwide Bank, where he had stated that he owned 90% and Samuel Roth had owned 10%of "Realty Corp.". The application to the First Nationwide Bank was at odds with the sworn complaint that was submitted to the court, as it omitted Walker as a shareholder in "Realty Corp.", in any capacity whatsoever. The decision attempted to absolve CGS&H of its liability for having violated the terms of the undertaking they had provided Weinstock in writing.
If CGS&H thought that Handler was the owner of the stock and Handler was the owner of the stock, why did it have to continuously lie to Weinstock and submit fraudulent affidavits to the courts? CGS&H could have simply admitted that Handler, as owner of the stock, stripped the corporation of its assets, mortgaged the properties and transferred the properties to his wife and his associates. Justice Douglass did not seem to consider the conduct of Handler and CGS&H in the course of litigation. Why did CGS&H continuously lie?