N.J. corruption probe figure pleads guilty

Oct. 20, 2009 at 3:56 PM
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FREEHOLD, N.J., Oct. 20 (UPI) -- Solomon Dwek, the key witness in a massive New Jersey corruption case, pleaded guilty Tuesday to real estate fraud charges, court observers said.

Dwek made similar pleas in both federal court in Newark, N.J., and in state Superior Court in Monmouth County to charges he obtained a $10 million loan to buy Manhattan property but instead used the proceeds to pay off nine people who were not related to that real estate deal, The (Newark) Star-Ledger reported.

Dwek, 33, made the plea as part of deal to testify against rabbis, politicians and others he helped indict as an undercover, wire-wearing informant -- one of the biggest corruption cases ever brought in New Jersey. Some 44 public officials and religious leaders have been indicted on money laundering, fraud and corruption charges as a result, the newspaper said.

Prosecutors say Dwek worked with rabbis to launder millions of dollars he led them to believe he was hiding from the bankruptcy court, and made dozens of tape-recorded payoffs to politicians while seeking approval for real estate projects in Jersey City, Hoboken, Secaucus and elsewhere, the Star-Ledger said.

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