They come from Bill Scherer's latest amended complaint, a mammoth 2,386-page lawsuit that found its way into my box this afternoon (along with one at the Sun-Sentinel, apparently). They concern Ponzi schemer Scott Rothstein's ongoing battle with regulators at Gibraltar Bank, where he badgers and bullies to keep his money in the bank despite overdrafts and discrepancies. It's Rothstein in all his Ponzi glory, using the sheer mass of the illusion he's created to overpower his adversaries.
There is a lot more to this Gibraltar Bank story. For one, the bank had great reason to suspect Rothstein was looting trust accounts, according to the lawsuit. Scherer alleges the bank ultimately looked the other way because of the huge profits it was making from the millions Rothstein was running through the bank. It made $200,000 in overdraft fees alone. The suit details numerous transactions that Scherer claims should have sent up alarm bells. "Gibraltar... was aware that Rothstein's banking activities were the quintessence of money laundering but allowed and endorsed such illegal behavior."
More about that later. Time for the emails, which were edited down by the law firm. All are sent from Rothstein to John Harris, the bank vice president who dealt directly with Rothstein and who was fired shortly after the scheme collapsed. While reading them, understand consider that, according to the suit, "Rothstein lavished Harris with gifts, including invitations to exclusive concerts and sporting events, dinners, gift baskets, and even a vintage $20,000 Rolex watch."
If they are going to start putting pressure on us again every time the account is od from the previous nights pod they can kiss my firm, my consulting group, albert, ovi, ovi's dad, roger, the Bahamas deal and all the rest that goes with me goodbye... I will not be pushed or
pressured by the idiot's in credit ever again. Not for one second. And you can tell them if they screw around with me I will be sure to tell every other one of their clients that I represent and that I am close to exactly what they are doing... that includes the levinsons and some other tasty accounts... I am running a law firm and I have way too much on my plate each day to worry about morons in credit who think I am evil incarnate and who have no clue how business is actually done... You and lisa are great and I do not want anything to effect our relationship but after all I have done and what I have clearly proved I can do I will not put up with even the slightest level of bullshit from them. You can tell them that they should be very wary of testing me at this stage of our relationship.
In that email, he mentions business associates Ovi Levy; his father, Simon Levy; business associate and former cruise company CEO Albert Peter; and perhaps political consultant Roger Stone.
Nov. 13, 2006:
Gotta love it... and tell them to fuck off... not interested in their heat... if they want my friends as clients they just need to deal with it when things get a bit dicey...
Nov. 17, 2006:
Johnny boy..... we need to establish a protocol with the folks in the gables regarding my accounts. Neither you nor I nor Lisa nor Irene needs the pressure they apply... It sends a message that, in all candor, I find repulsive. They cannot be my 'best buds' when we are cranking, and then forget my name when we have a blip on the screen..... even if it is a major blip. They need to chill. They can not be my 'best buds' when I am doing all I can to refer the bank business and then forget my name when they fell like forgetting what I am trying to do for my business and their business. I bank with you because we treat each other with respect and because we understand the true meaning of what it is to be partners in something amazing... My firm was instrumental in getting the governor elected. My firm was instrumental in getting 38 other elected officials in Washington and other states elected this cycle. Our client list grows every day. And candidly, I am just getting warmed up....... and they can either hang on and enjoy the ride or I will find someone who will. I can not operate thinking that when the shit hits the fan, they will cut and run. Charlie crist shows up here..... I call you. I have a client that I think I can sway to change banks, I call you. I have a deal that I think I can steer your way..... ie. the Blandin deal that we tried to put together, I insist on you. The Bahamas deal.... you. I think you can benefit from being in with my boys, you are in. We hit a bump, I always do what I say I am going to do. You do the same. But your superiors or the decision makers do not see it the same way. And candidly, their nonsense and total lack of respect is growing tiresome. Tell them to back off. They are either on the team and want my firm or they do not. There is no in between in this type of business relationship.
Feb, 14, 2007:
I can not be bothered by them on a daily basis. I do not care if they are watching. They can watch all they want..... that is their prerogative. If they want our business, they have to deal with it right now. If they do not want our business, commerce bank has just flown its senior guy down from new jersey and they just sent us 30 litigation files and wants our accounts. ..... overdrafts and all... The bottom line is that business that is as politically connected as we are is a hot commodity right now.... new governor and all..... new appointments and all..... and the presidential election just around the corner with roger running mccain.
March 11, 2009
I do not believe that I am being treated as valued customer by gibraltar and candidly, it has grown tiresome... i also intend to meet with stu and david boden in the morning to discuss ending my banking relationship with gibraltar.
Typical Rothstein B.S. Six months later, he purchased a $5 million stake in the bank. These emails show only Rothstein's side of this Gibraltar mess. Within the bank, there were officials who wanted to end the relationship with Rothstein. One man consistently got in the way of that, according to sources. I'll write about that tomorrow.