In a move aimed at further distancing Rothstein Rosenfeldt and Adler lawyers from the firm's former swindling chairman, a media tour was offered of the law firm and Scott Rothstein's "inner sanctum" -- the elaborate office where he hatched his schemes.
The Pulp went along for the tour, which was led by former U.S. Attorney Kendall Coffey, who is representing the law firm in the wake of the discovery of a Ponzi scheme worth at least $400 million.
While the press was walking through his office, Rothstein was believed to still be in federal custody, spilling his guts after his dramatic return from Morocco on Tuesday.
You're going to get to see what I saw, only it will be in dizzying video that I shot during the tour. There's a reason that I'm not a documentary film maker apparently. I'll likely be putting up video into the evening, but here's a quick rundown of some of the highlights:
-- Rothstein's inner sanctum was separated by a security-coded door that was accessible only by
him and a couple of key associates. One of those associates was his COO, Debra Villegas, the only person in the law firm other than a secretary or two with an office in the sanctum.
If you like this story, consider signing up for our email newsletters.
SHOW ME HOW
You have successfully signed up for your selected newsletter(s) - please keep an eye on your mailbox, we're movin' in!
-- Photographs and commendations are everywhere, but one person takes center stage: Charlie Crist. The governor and U.S. Senate candidate's photos are everywhere, including a photo taken at one of the governor's birthday parties where Charlie; his wife, Carol Rome; and Scott Rothstein blow out his candles together. I kid you not. You'll see it on video later.
-- I had been in his office last year, but since then he'd renovated the whole area and made it two or three times larger and full of more mahogany and leather. It came complete with a huge painting on the wall that could transform into a giant flat-screen TV and James Bond-like pop-up entertainment features that were demonstrated during the tour. Another wall was an all-glass view east from Las Olas to the ocean.
-- Down the hall from his office was a "private elevator" to which Coffey again said only Rothstein and a few key associates had access. It was disguised to look like a regular door (and it was locked).
-- In the private foyer leading to his office was a painting of Al Pacino in Godfather III. And sitting on his large leather couch was, yes, the "Jewish Avenger" cape and shirt given to Rothstein as a gift by former state senator and current Broward County Commission candidate Steve Geller. It was of very high quality, professionally made.