Solomon Dwek. The federal informant in the NJ corruption cases

solomon dwek mini-site. Ashbury Park Press

The Ashbury Park Press has a comprehensive mini-site on Solomon Dwek, detailing his curious, checkered past, including a recent arrest for defrauding a bank for $21 million. He’s now bankrupt and the apparent informant for the NJ corruption arrests.

Excellent investigative reporting like this is a good reason why we need newspapers.

Dwek’s real estate empire seems to have been a Ponzi scheme, borrowing money from trusting people based on his parent’s good name. But it collapsed in 2006, and he was indicted then for bank fraud after trying to pass a bogus $25 million check.

Yet NJ politicos and Sephardic Jewish apparently continued to trust him, even knowing he had been arrested. Gosh, if I was going to take a bribe or launder money, it sure wouldn’t be from someone who has mysteriously been free on bail since 2006 on federal charges.

Over the last two years, as the judge repeatedly granted federal prosecutors’ requests to delay his trial, Dwek seemed unfazed. Many following the case said it was obvious the 36-year-old Monmouth County businessman had made a deal to become a federal snitch in exchange for a lighter sentence.

“His wearing a wire was the worst kept secret in New Jersey,” said Dennis Kearney, an attorney representing PNC Bank in Dwek’s bank fraud case. “Everyone’s No. 1 conclusion has been for years the guy’s been cooperating.”

Were there financial ties between the NJ politicos and the Sephardic Jews?

Who were they laundering money for?

Why did they trust Dwek past the point of stupidity?

In this, as with Madoff and Allen Stanford, there are shadows in the background we see only murkily. Where did the money come from and where was it going? The NJ politicos allegedly were taking bribes for construction, an industry notorious for making money cleanse itself, do tricks, disappear and reappear.

And lest we jump to one wrong conclusion. Not one of the arrested has been been identified by the feds as being Mafia. Not one.

Look at the names on [the] arrest list, and it’s a beautiful rainbow of wretchedness. Italians, Jews and Irish; Hispanics, blacks and whites. Democrats and (one) Republicans. Men and women. People from age 33 to age 87.

Yet think about who’s missing here in the Soprano State. That’s right, none of those charged has been fingered by the feds as being a member of the Mafia. So many new groups are now involved in corrupting New Jersey that the Mob must have been crowded out of the market. We’re talking progress, people.

However, I think organized crime in whatever facet are those murky shadows in the background here, and also with Madoff and Allen Stanford.