County Connected Law Firm Accused of Concealing Campaign Donations

It is not DeCotiis (this time) which gets their lawyers to fund Union County (and Rahway) campaigns but they make no secret of their bribes.

Whereas, as reported:

In the complaint, the Election Law Enforcement Commission alleges the partners —Stephen Edelstein, Lawrence Schwartz, Nicholas Celso III, Stefani C. Schwartz, Denis G. Murphy, Matthew I. Kane, Andrew B. Brown and Allan P. Dzwilewski — reimbursed donations made by three unnamed associates at their law firm, Schwartz, Simon, Edelstein & Celso.

Under state law, it is illegal to make a donation in the name of another person. Their attorney, Mark Sheridan, did not respond to requests for comment.

In 2007, 2008 and 2009, an unnamed associate at the firm donated nearly $6,900 to 18 committees and candidates, including $1,250 to the Essex County Democratic Committee, $1,000 to Sen. Kevin O’Toole (R-Essex), $500 to an Orange councilman’s bid for mayor, and hundreds of dollars to school organizations such as Roselle Education Team and the Committee for Sensible School Spending, according to the complaint.

That person was reimbursed by either the firm itself or a partner, the complaint said.

In 2008 and 2009, a second associate made three donations totaling $800, and was reimbursed, as well. A third unnamed associate was repaid for making one, $250 contribution to Friends of Bloomfield Schools.

The eight partners each shelled out between $756 and $1,111 to reimburse the associates for their donations, according to the complaint.

From 2004 (the earliest year for which we have check registry records) through early 2009 Schwartz, Simon, Edelstein & Celso got $378,638 in fees from Union County for which some of their lawyers (Hope Blackburn, Jason Waldstein, Burt Zitomer, and Lawrence Schwartz) made substantial  donations to people approving those bills.


3 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by ReadsLikeAMafiaBook on October 22, 2015 at 12:24 pm

    Why do people go to such extremes to make political donations, including breaking the law? Logic says that there must be an awful amount of pressure to make these donations to get the work. What other reason could there be?


  2. Posted by Jim Buettner on October 22, 2015 at 9:32 pm

    Considering the money is never needed in order to get the all Democratic freeholder board elected year after year after year; for over 20 years! What other purpose could it really serve? RLMB is logic is clear.


  3. Posted by Brian P Keane on October 23, 2015 at 9:25 am

    Just look at the 11 million dollar bid Mar-Bridge Enterprises got away with for construction bidding at the VocTech School wing over at Scotch Plains school on Raritan Rd. Incumbent Democrats used to fight for Union Laborers now they just ignore them.


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