« Projects drew players, federal scrutiny | Main | At Senate hearing on eminent domain reform, forceful criticism of the status quo and the ESDC's answers, but reform won't happen overnight »

January 8, 2010

From the U.S. Attorney on the Yonkers case: "the developer enlisted the [now-indicted] Jereis," but he "demanded" a consulting contract from FCR

Atlantic Yards Report

Forest City Ratner says it's not a target in the Yonkers corruption case involving former Council Member Sandy Annabi and former Republican Party Chair Zehy Jereis, but the U.S. Attorney wouldn't confirm that.

According to the prepared remarks for U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara, which I received today, the clues regarding FCR's role are contradictory; one sentence suggests FCR was a mover behind the alleged dirty deal, while another suggests that "Developer No. 2" might have been extorted:

In June, the developer enlisted Jereis, who had been providing Annabi with tens of thousands of dollars in secret payments, to get Councilwoman Annabi’s vote.

...And for his part, Jereis demanded, and received, a so-called consulting contract worth $60,000 a year from the Ridge Hill developer immediately after Councilwoman Annabi switched her vote.

Did FCR blow the whistle?

According to unnamed sources talking to the Daily News (as noted by DDDB), it looks like FCR was playing along:

At no time during these meetings and agreements with Jereis did Ratner go to the FBI, according to two sources familiar with the investigation.

link

NoLandGrab: Oh, please. If Forest City was being extorted, Bruce could have worn a wire and exposed the plot. The feds ought to heed Deep Throat's Watergate advice: follow the money.

Posted by eric at January 8, 2010 6:04 AM