I'll be finishing the Kim Wendell series soon, but this morning I want to hit one important point about Fort Lauderdale Police Chief Frank Adderley.
In his recent Miami Herald interview, Adderley claimed a friendship with cigar man Moe Sohail, the Pakistani national who was a key member of Ponzi schemer Scott Rothstein's entourage. It seems the chief thought that if he could pawn off his friendship and gifts from Rothstein on the current jailbird's buddies like Sohail, it might look better for him.
Fat chance. Adderley is only digging himself a deeper hole. At least when it came to Rothstein, Adderley could claim that there was no indication in the public record that he had troubles with the law. Though Sohail has avoided criminal prosecution, the same can't be said for
Before we get into Sohail's previous legal woes, let's look at the passage from the Herald story regarding the chief and Sohail:
Adderley and Rothstein also shared a mutual friend, Moe Sohail, who owns a downtown cigar shop. Adderley said he knew Sohail because he bought cigars from him. Occasionally, the two were among many people who watched sports at Sohail's home, he said.
It was because of his friendship with Sohail that Adderley went to the scene of a car crash involving him on Aug. 21.
Adderley said he got a call from Rothstein that day saying Sohail was seriously hurt.
Adderley said he went to see if his friend was OK. He later realized Sohail's injuries weren't as serious as Rothstein described.
OK, so the chief of police is hanging out at Moe's cigar shop and watching games at Moe's house. I'm not going to get into what credible sources have told me about Sohail; let's just say he has a reputation as a guy who can supply just about anything you might want. Remember when Goodfella, believed to be Rothstein himself, talked about BSO and "leg breakers" coming after Sohail? Let's just say that's worthy of further investigation.
But now we'll stick to what we know. First, Sohail was charged with credit card fraud back in the 1990s after allegedly stealing a woman's identity. That should have been easily discoverable by a law enforcement honcho. It's not clear how Sohail resolved that issue, but the Bentley-driving cigar shop owner told me recently that he's never been convicted of a crime.
Second, Sohail ran into trouble with the feds sometime around 2002. Again, credible sources have provided me some information on what happened, but I'm going to wait until it's iron-clad before I go into details. There are some documents indicating Sohail tangled with the feds that I have in my possession, but they are depleted of details.
Anthony McDermott told me he banned Sohail from his restaurant, Riley McDermott's, when he learned from Rothstein that Sohail was a federal informant. McDermott said that Rothstein told him that Sohail's troubles with the feds had been resolved several years before.
As usual with Adderley, we're left with more questions than answers. (And I'm not even mentioning the fact that his recent late disclosure of the New York flight on gift forms basically serve as evidence that he violated city rules a la School Board Member Phyllis Hope and the FBI boat.) Here are a few:
Did Rothstein fail to mention to Chief Adderley that Sohail had been a federal informant?
Did the chief know about it and look the other way?
Did Adderley know about the credit card fraud when he was chumming around with Sohail?
How ignorant can a police chief be?
That's a start.