Not only that.
As I said to my pal One Eye, it wasn't the sweeping round-up we'd hoped for, it was actually better. Because the Feds handed Hoboken a gripping who-dun-it, in the form of a criminal complaint with (3) unidentified players: Individuals 1, 2, and 3, and the promise of more intrigue to come.
Folks, there's a reason why it's unfolding the way it is.
The Ricciardi matter was cut and-dried enough; there was no reason to hold onto it any longer. And the Feds waited until after the election so as not to be accused of interfering with the outcome. After that, they wasted no time. Boom.
As for the others identified in the complaint, Individuals 1, 2 and 3, those cases are most likely more complex and may overlap other jurisdictions with respect to charges and prosecution. Further, the release of the narrative may loosen tongues of those who suspect they'll be implicated: either recipients of intercepted emails and/or those with information about the conspiracy.
At the end of the day, proceeding with Ricciardi first only advances future prosecutions with new information and leverage to negotiate with 'persons-of-interest'.
So from the POV of the observer, the way it's coming down is more fun, isn't it?
Because now we've got members of the City Council turning on each other (Beth Mason: "The names of these individuals should be released immediately.") and a lot of squirming, sweating and worrying amongst those who think laws are for other people, that the ends (destroying the Mayor) justify the means, and the lives of ordinary people can be toyed with (Melli and Bryan).
Karma's a bitch.
So those are a few of my thoughts. On to those of my legal department, Not-Stempler.
Mind you, while you and I digest the Ricciardi complaint as a narrative, Not-Stempler's reading reveals a road map for the prosecution of the case.
Based upon the news articles that you sent over as well as the criminal complaint filed today, I would observe that the initial complaint by the Mayor to the FBI demonstrated a deft understanding of criminal law as well as a clear indication that the local prosecutor’s office was not to be trusted with the prosecution of the matter.
Also of interest is the fact that the US attorney retained jurisdiction in the matter, when it could have easily been prosecuted on the state level.
However, in order for the NJ AG to retain jurisdiction, and not refer the matter down, she would have to essentially issue a vote of no confidence in the local prosecutor. It is understandable that she would be reluctant to do so. Allowing the US Attorney’s office to proceed with the prosecution enables the NJ AG to continue working with the US Attorney’s office on developing other aspects of the ongoing criminal investigation into Hoboken.
The use of unnamed fellow conspirators in the criminal complaint signals that there will be additional arrests.
Based upon the information that you sent to me regarding the criminal referral of mail ballots, it would appear that many of the same people are involved in both conspiracies, giving further support to the AG’s decision to work with the US Attorney’s office on the matter and permit the federal prosecutors to lead the charge, so to speak.
I would suggest that it is likely that, in addition to the arrest of the technician today, you will likely see additional arrests based upon a criminal enterprise theory. In such a matter, it is not necessary that all spokes of the wheel actually speak to each other and advance the criminal effort. That there is a common goal or plan, which is rather easy to demonstrate, once you have the evidence on one of the conspirators, is all that necessary.
So, if I understand this correctly, even if a participant in the conspiracy wasn't 'hands-on' and tried to shield herself by with using others to receive intercepted emails, she may be arrested and charged as a member of a criminal conspiracy.
And it looks like the Ricciardi complaint sets up a conspiracy prosecution by introducing our toxic political environment in which the email interceptions took place:
6. As part of the investigation, law enforcement learned that the City's political culture iscurrently divided into two main factions. The current Mayor was sworn in to office as Acting Mayor on or about July 31, 2009, after the previous mayor was arrested on federal corruption charges. The Mayor subsequently won a special election to fill the remainder of the previousmayor's four-year term.See what I mean?
7.The investigation has also revealed that many of the elected and appointed officials in the City retain strong ties to the previous administration or are otherwise politically opposed to the Mayor, and have sparred with the current Mayor on a variety of municipal issues, large and small. These officials include several members of the City Council, as well as high-ranking employees of different City municipal agencies, such as Public Safety Department, the Fire Department, and the OEM.
8. Evidence of this schism in the City is apparent through the postings of articles and comments on City-related issues to different weblogs, or "blogs."
We can expect to see all sorts of characters pulled into this. It's not guesswork anymore. The United States of America has laid it out.
So to see the finger-pointing and denials begin, well...
Do you like yours with butter?