If a man is known by the company he keeps, we all ought to be mighty worried about State Senator Carl Kruger. He’s got a cast of characters around him shady enough to rival any comic book’s arch-typical corrupt politician – not that we’re saying he’s corrupt or anything. Honest.
First there was Michael Levitis, the Rasputin Restaurant-owner who was allegedly peddling access to Kruger to fellow business owners. Kruger claimed he knew nothing of it, but the FBI said they’re still looking into the politician. Then there was the mysterious Reliable Repair company he gave $10,500 in payments to, but which may not actually exist.
Now there’s Nikolai Dozortsev, a Brighton Beach-connected international money launderer. Kruger, along with Brighton Beach State Assemblyman Alec Brook-Krasny and Borough President Marty Markowitz all stood up for the exemplary Dozortsev, who will be sentenced in federal court later this week. All three of the local pols sent the judge presiding over the case letters attesting to Dozortsev’s personal character.
That character, mind you, is of a twice-convicted felon with a two-decade-long criminal career, including as the money man for a violent organized crime syndicated. Dozortsev is a stooge for European mob boss Ricardo Fanchini, a Polish national and violent drug kingpin.
NY Post got their hands on the politicians’ letters, and also hit the representatives’ offices for comments.
The result is comical display of our community’s leaders attempting to publicly wash their hands of a cohort they privately defended. Perhaps now that the cat’s out of the bag, our representatives will stop associating with nefarious criminals. A boy can dream, can’t he?
… Brook-Krasny calls Dozortsev a man “of integrity and strong moral fiber” in a letter written on Assembly letterhead and addressed to the judge presiding over the case.
“I would consider [Dozortsev] a valuable member of our society” whose “many accomplishments and positive contributions to the community should be taken into consideration when assessing the matter at hand,” the Brighton Beach politician wrote.
His spokeswoman, Kate Cucco, claimed the assemblyman “would never knowingly use his office or position to influence a judicial matter,” and bizarrely explained that she suspects the letter represents “staff wrongdoing.”
Kruger, another Brighton pol, who sits on the state Senate’s Crime Victims and Crime and Corrections committees, urged Judge Frederic Block to kindly “take under consideration” the assistance Dozortsev and his family has given to other immigrants from Russia settling in New York.
A Kruger spokeswoman claimed the plea for leniency “was a generic form letter written for constituents,” despite the specific references in it. She did not know how many “constituent letters” the legislator has written on behalf of convicted felons.
Markowitz wrote Block a letter praising the character of Dozortsev’s parents and explaining that although he had never met “Nick,” he hopes their qualities had been passed on to him.