Wednesday, May 1, 2013

FBI investigation into Councilwoman Beth Mason surfaces?

 FBI Hoboken investigation appears to focus on Beth Mason's political contributions

In a story with strong implications in the FBI Hoboken investigation, Hoboken's Grafix Avenger revealed a visit to its website Tuesday by the FBI Criminal Justice Division seeking details into Councilwoman Beth Mason's spidery web of political contributions.

As seen in data tracking software, the FBI Information Systems group based in Arlington, Virginia is identified as the source of the effort. The search string the FBI applied was "Elizabeth Mason Elizabeth City Council" in a Google search. 

The first result is "City of Hoboken, NJ >> Elizabeth Mason," and the fifth result on the page is "Grafix Avenger: MORE Mason Political Contributions- UPDATE"

Screen capture of the FBI Criminal Justice IS division on Grafix Avenger shows an interest in Beth Mason.

The political arm of the Mason family, an ongoing political committee called "Friends of Beth Mason for City Council," has contributed some excessive legal political contributions to Tim Occhipinti's campaigns, Old Guard Hoboken candidates, Hudson County political action committees, along with Passaic and Bergen candidates in NJ.  

One excessive donation was made to Assemblyman Ruben Ramos.  To date, it's not clear if the full excess of the 2011 contribution was returned.

Another related political contribution was to a 2012 Bergen Freeholder candidate, Tracy Zur who worked in Hoboken at that time as the City's Municipal Court prosecutor.  A 2013 contract for Hoboken prosecutorial services was not renewed.  Tracy Zur is currently a Bergen Freeholder, elected last November.

Some in local media and Mason political operatives who have worked for her over years have complained about what they said is an injustice surrounding references made to themselves and the councilwoman in the FBI Hoboken investigation that began in the spring of 2011.

At least one prominent Beth Mason political operative has claimed in filed court documents not to be an object of the FBI investigation stating they have not been remanded "in custody."

In March, MSV wrote of an unconfirmed report Beth Mason's home computer contained illegal emails from the mayor's office.  In the summer of 2012, Mason claimed communications she had with the FBI would be made public to former Councilwoman Carol Marsh.  Asked by Marsh if she could see the FBI communications in writing, Mason replied, "Sure, I'd be happy to give them to you."

Since that time however, no written communications with the FBI have been released by Beth Mason.

Patrick Ricciardi the former IT Manager at City Hall and the focal point of a massive data theft conspiracy in the mayor's office is scheduled for sentencing to federal prison on July 1st.  No other conspirators have been arrested to date.

Beth Mason has given a variety of contradictory answers to her involvement in the City Hall Data Theft Ring (DTR) since she herself sponsored a 2011 resolution seeking all the emails of two mayoral staffers covering the exact same time as Ricciardi's looting of information from the mayor's office back to early 2010.  

The co-sponsor of Mason's April 2011 resolution was Councilman Michael Russo who consistently avoided answering to any role he had with his alleged friend Patrick Ricciardi other than a fall story on the Jersey Journal where he, his cousin Terry Castellano and Tim Occhipinti all said they had not received any illicit emails from Ricciardi.

The council minority members have not claimed they were unaware nor saw illicit information, some falling under attorney-client privilege from the mayor's office via third parties.  That open issue is most concerning with the Mason political operatives and one senior City Hall employee MSV has dubbed "the Hub."

The US Attorney's Office for NJ spokeswoman declined to comment on the FBI investigation in Hoboken with MSV last March.  Now there's evidence the investigation is continuing and Beth Mason is a part.

Courtroom art?  Could this court rendering courtesy of Grafix Avenger be a case of art imitating coming reality?
A story on the Grafix Avenger website reveals a visit by the FBI criminal justice division looking into Beth Mason.


Talking Ed Note: MSV can confirm the authenticity of the software cited by Grafix Avenger.  How?  Da Horsey gave it to her.

As a matter of policy, MSV will not publicly comment here whether the FBI has visited this website nor specify frequency or what information was visited.  

The listing of NJ donations as originally cited by Grafix Avenger in January:

Hoboken is heating up and so is the focus on Beth Mason.