Thursday, December 01, 2005


Sunday, Nov. 20, 2005
U.S. occupation official charged in Iraqi kickback scheme had earlier fraud conviction
By MARK SHERMAN Associated Press Writer
(AP) - WASHINGTON-A former U.S. occupation official in Iraq bought real estate, cars, jewelry and home improvements with the kickbacks he received from a businessman who won more than US$13 million in reconstruction work, federal authorities say.
Robert J. Stein Jr., 50, of Fayetteville, North Carolina, and his wife, even used the money to pay federal taxes and restitution for Stein's earlier federal fraud conviction, according to an affidavit made public Thursday.
Stein faces conspiracy, money laundering, wire fraud and other charges stemming from his alleged role in helping Philip H. Bloom, a U.S. citizen who has lived in Romania for many years, get the Iraqi contracts, federal authorities said Thursday.
More than US$630,000 flowed to Stein and others from accounts Bloom controls in banks in Switzerland, the Netherlands and Kuwait, prosecutors said. Bloom, 65, has been charged with conspiracy and money laundering stemming from an investigation that Justice Department officials say could result in additional charges against others.
Stein, who worked for the Coalition Provisional Authority in Iraq, and other CPA officials allegedly helped rig bids for Bloom and three companies he controlled for contracts to do work in al-Hillah and Karbala, two cities south of Baghdad.
Bloom was arrested Sunday at New Jersey's Newark International Airport, while Stein was arrested Monday in Fayetteville, authorities said. They were being held in federal custody, pending hearings in U.S. District Court in Washington beginning next week.
Robert A. Mintz, Bloom's lawyer, said he was reviewing the allegations against his client and had no comment. Stein was represented by a federal public defender in a brief appearance Tuesday in U.S. District Court in Fayetteville. Elizabeth Luck, a spokeswoman for the public defender's office, declined to comment on Stein's case.
Stein was the comptroller and funding officer for the CPA's South Central Region.
Court records show he was convicted in 1996 for defrauding a financial institution. He pleaded guilty and was sentenced to eight months in prison and three years of supervised release. He also was ordered to repay the unidentified institution US$45,000.
According to the affidavit supporting the latest charges, he used US$200 of the money from Bloom to make a restitution payment. His wife used US$5,821 to pay 2001 federal taxes - a payment made in January 2004, the affidavit said.
It is unclear whether CPA officials knew about his prior conviction. Jim Mitchell, spokesman for the special inspector general for Iraq reconstruction, said there was a lack of oversight when the CPA was hiring people because the inspector general's office was not yet in place there.
The U.S.-controlled CPA ran Iraq from shortly after the March 2003 invasion until June 2004. It had final say over spending from the Development Fund for Iraq, made up mainly of Iraqi oil revenues.
Rep. Henry Waxman, a California Democrat, said Thursday that the complaints against Bloom and Stein revealed egregious misuse of the money and deserve congressional hearings.
"Now that there is concrete evidence of fraud involving U.S. officials and the Development Fund for Iraq, we have an obligation not to avert our oversight," Waxman wrote Rep. Chris Shays, a Connecticut Republican, chairman of a House Government Reform subcommittee that has examined fraud allegations in the U.N. Oil-for-Food program.
The allegations against Bloom and Stein have their roots in audits performed by Inspector General Stuart W. Bowen Jr.
Mitchell said Bowen was working on more than 50 cases involving Iraq reconstruction, and has referred up to a dozen to the Justice Department.
"This is the first case, and there will be more," Mitchell said.
At one point, Bloom allegedly was paying at least US$200,000 a month to CPA officials and others, although the affidavit did not say for how long.
Projects won by Bloom's companies included a new police academy for Al-Hillah and renovation of the public library in Karbala. Bloom's Romanian-based companies are Global Business Group, GBG Holdings and GBG-Logistics Division, the affidavit said.
Associated Press Writer Lolita Baldor contributed to this report.
On the Net:
Justice Department: http://www.usdoj.gov2005-11-18T10:05:26Z

By BeeBee: This is unbelievable that the media is suppressing this fraud! If you go to the Interantional Jew written by Henry Ford in my links to the right, and look for the link that talks about the Protocols of Zionism then you will see this in the 12th plank. Now the suppressers of freedom of speech, say that the Protocols are nonsense and they did not come from the Talmud. But one cannot deny that the 12th plank is right on with what is going on with these crimes of enormous theft because the plank dictates that crimes shall not be reported of public officials. We are supposedly the moral majority party, but have you heard Rush, Ann, Hannity or Boortz beating on the tables and shouting their lungs out about this horrible crime. I guess lying about sex with Monica that Clinton did was way more terrible than stealing millions and millions of dollars that our grandchildren will have to pay. Folks, for the love of God wake up and demand that Congressional hearings are held. I want Pat Buchanan to run for President! I mentioned the Congressman from California that stole a measely $1.4 million in kickbacks from our National Treasury on Ann Coulter's chat room blog, and you'd have thought this Republican had only stolen a Snickers candy bar! Come on and wake up people, there are people sitting in the Bibb County Jail for stealing less than $1,000. Do you remember that Comandment that we cannot no longer read in any court house "thou shalt not steal." Well for the love of God, does this moral part of humanity apply to government officials? Of course it does not because we just sit back like a bunch of scared sheep, and say well the government or big brother will take care of it for us. Big brother takes care of everything, right. I suggest that you read Orwell's book "1984" and his book "Animal Farm." I read "Animal Farm" on the way to North Carolina last week in a few hours, and have read about half of "1984." Both books are no doubt the work of a genius, as Orwell knew perfectly well what was happening to freedom in London after the war. I absolutely think that he was a prophet for humanity. A good analogy for government theft is like the high school football coach that moved the goal markder in a football game, and the principal of the school suspended him, likewise we should suspend and imprison our corrupt government officials. You see the principal was on the same team with the coach, right? But she took a stand, and wanted punishement for the crime. Our politicians protect each other, and because of partisan politics the two morally corrupt groups take care of their own. Now there are some good politicians out there, or at least I think they are. But these good politicians are no doubt suppressed by the rich and powerful.

You see a decorated Marine veteran U.S. Congressman with 37 years of service to our Country, Mr. Murtha is a traitor and accused of wanting to cut and run. As mentioned earlier former President Carter is criticized for having an opinion (see earlier post), any General that disagreed with the tactics of the Iraq War was politely told to take a hike. Look at Colin Powell and his doubts about the war. Look at Joe Wilson with his covert agent wife, Valerie Plane, and I feel that I can say that 99% of all of the staunch Republicans accept beyond a shadow of a doubt that Wilson is the bad guy, Valerie Plane is the bad person and the dissenting Generals and told to keep quiet. When people align themselves with a party with the follow the leader mentality where no one says a word without a talking point, then this should tell you wow this is propaganda! Everyone talks the same talk, walks the same walk and the public unaware of what is going on works hard everyday trying to pay for high gasoline costs and record debt and have a happy life in the midst of a war on terror. We are expected to smile and be happy, and scream at dissenters such as Cindy Sheehan. My goodness, just who does Cindy think she is anyway to demand answers to why her son had to die for Israel, as she has been told. She has read the material out there, and she feels that her life is crashing in all around her. Put yourself in Cindy's shoes, and can you honestly say that a mother does not have a right to want the truth. My friends that lost their dear Marine son last October were just absolutely lifeless when I visited their home. The lady looked as though she had aged 20 years, since I had seen her the last time. And, the time of our last visit was most certainly not that much by a long shot. The father hugged me, and said "we do not even have Kelley's body to bury...(and with big sobs) we cannot even hug him one more time." It was the most chilling experience I ever had, sitting in their front room and feeling so desparate to search for what to say. Senator Chambliss called at least three times, while I was visiting and was trying to be helpful with the details of the DNA identification that was taking longer than expected. The funeral was being held up, and Lord that is painful. No one knows the horror of war, unless they experience it. And I am an outsider, and it has touched me so much that I cannot begin to know the pain that Sgt Kelley Courtney USMC's parents feel. And there are so many more Kelley's out there that have left this world before their parents, and that is so very devastating to these families. Oh, I am so very proud of our brave men and women in uniform. These are the real angels of our Country, and I can honestly say that John Lennon's song "Imagine" does seem like heaven on Earth. If we could change the road were on, could we ever make peace with radical Islam (oxymoron right?), and end wars once and for all? This is why Jesus said in Matthews "that there will always be wars and rumors of wars." Because Jesus knew that the controversy over religion would continue to be fought with blood shed with nations rising against nations with different cultures or ethnos because one never comes to terms over religion and power. See to me the "love of money is the root of all evil" is the dominant force for wars and religion is secondary. The New World Order idea that secularism of religion is the answer is not the answer. That is why it is Anti-Christ for anyone to succumb to the government erasing religion from the governed. This is why it is necessary for God fearing Jews to join with Christians and Muslims and Jehova's Witnesses preserving the religions that we hold dear to our respective hearts and souls. God Bless.

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