October 15, 2000|
Round Up The Usual Suspects
By John William Tuohy
compiled by John William Tuohy
TAIPEI: A heavily indebted Taiwan insurance salesman had two friends to chop off his left hand on Friday in a bid to collect on insurance policies totaling up to $645,000 police said. Huang Chun-ming, 35, was admitted to hospital and tried to pass it off as a gruesome attack by a teenage motorcycle gang.
Police said they were suspicious because after combing the crime scene they could not find the missing hand.
Police questioned one of Huang's friends, who admitted to committing insurance fraud because Huang had ran up gambling debts of about $200,000.
Huang drank kaoliang, a strong Chinese spirit, before his friends chopped off his hand with a samurai sword, police said. They had to hack it more than once.
Police later found Huang's missing hand at his home.
Jana Pelnis, who was a stripper at the Gold Club, pleaded guilty last Friday to reduced charges of aiding a racketeering conspiracy in return for her cooperation against fellow defendants, including club owner Steve Kaplan.
The Gold Club trial is tentatively set for February. Kaplan and other club officials are charged with ties to organized crime, money laundering, credit card fraud, police corruption and prostitution. Prosecutors have said Kaplan paid his dancers to provide sexual favors to professional athletes and other high-spending customers.
Egg has 1.1 million customers. Bank officials said its security systems were never breached in the case and that no money was stolen. It said `fraudulent applications'' had been served on the bank but neither Egg nor the police would elaborate.
Police say a criminal gang had made multiple, bogus applications for savings accounts and loans, prompting a six-month investigation which culminated in arrests.
Officers of the National Crime Squad made the arrests on Tuesday morning in a raid on seven addresses northwest of London. The three men arrested were all in their 30s. Police confiscated computer equipment, documents, cash and drugs during the raid.
Edelstein was appointed by President Truman and served on the bench for 48 years, hearing cases until his death.
Among his active cases was the landmark suit brought by the Justice Department against the International Brotherhood of Teamsters in 1988. He played an active role in efforts to monitor the union, and in June he rejected rules proposed by the department and the union concerning next year's Teamsters elections.
Edelstein's other decisions in the Teamsters case included clearing the way in March 1999 for James Hoffa to take the helm of the union.
On Aug. 20, 1999, Canadian police raided Starnet's Vancouver offices and executives' homes. The company's shares plunged 69 percent that day.
The decision was a setback for Los Angeles County prosecutors who sought to withhold the names of three witnesses to a 1993 jailhouse killing.
Prosecutors said they feared the Mexican Mafia would have sought reprisals against the witnesses of the stabbing death of a Los Angeles County jail inmate.
Mr. Tuohy can be reached at MobStudy@aol.com
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