Judge Joseph Golia — now retired
The circumstances of the highly suspicious death of mortgage fraud victim and anti-corruption whistleblower Sunny Sheu were reported by the Black Star News in a series of articles published between 2009 when he was still alive and fighting to prevent his home from being stolen with the help of a judge he accused of corruption and in 2010 when he died — the doctor who treated him at New York Hospital of Queens after he was mortally wounded, Zeeshan Ahmed, told BSN that there was “foul play” involved in his death.
The first of these articles detailed his 10-year struggle to save his home from a mortgage fraud scheme, his contention with New York State Supreme court Judge Joseph Golia who abetted the fraud, and Sheu’s illegal detention by two NYPD detectives, who, according to his sworn testimony to the FBI, threatened him with death if he complained against the judge or continued to fight for his property. (Judge Golia at the time also refused The Black Star News’s requests to be interviewed).
After Sheu died on June 26, 2010, the Black Star News wrote articles about the refusal to investigate the suspicious circumstances of his death and the cover up by the NYPD, the Queens County District Attorney, the Office of Court Administration, The New York Hospital of Queens, and other entities. (Articles also were subsequently written for, or appeared in, a number of other outlets including Truthout).
The police claimed Sheu’s death was an “accident” because a purported witness had seen him collapse while walking; this is what the NYPD also told the Medical Examiner Michael Greenberg, as previously reported by The Black Star News. After three years of investigation and reporting and filing Freedom of Information Letters BSN finally obtained tapes of the 911 calls. Not a single one of the witnesses who called 911 said they had seen Sheu collapse while walking; all found him laying on the street mortally wounded and convulsing. This means the NYPD had also misled the M.E.
This article is the first in a series detailing the results of our investigation between 2012 and the present. In that time, the circle of NYC agencies involved with the cover up has widened, and now includes the Department of Investigation and the Office of the Inspector General.
Even Mayor Bill de Blasio’s office — like Bloomberg’s before him — hasn’t responded to our inquiries.
Sheu was unquestionably the victim of a mortgage fraud, and unquestionably denied due process by the judge. He was unquestionably illegally detained, and was concerned enough about his life to beg the FBI for witness protection from his NYPD abductors. Shortly before his death Sheu recorded a brief video statement saying if he were to be harmed the suspects should be Judge Golia and the two detectives who had threatened his life — the video is posted on YouTube.
There can also be no question that the entire Law Enforcement system of New York City, including the NYPD, the Queens DA, the Attorney General of New York State, the Department of Investigation, the Office of Inspector General, and the FBI have continued to cover up the facts and circumstances of Sheu’s death by refusing to investigate his suspicious death — a death that involved “foul play” as the doctor who treated him confided to BSN.
Here is the story of the coverup.
After Sunny Sheu’s death on June 26, 2010, the Blackstar News repeatedly sent certified letters informing Mayor Bloomberg and Commissioner Kelly of the case and demanding an investigation. Despite proof of receipt, none of these letters was ever acknowledged or responded to by Bloomberg or Kelly. Similar letters were sent to Bloomberg’s successor New York Mayor Bill De Blasio and Commissioner William J. Bratton, which were likewise ignored.
The BSN letter ignored by the Mayor’s office and New York Police Department (NYPD) Commissioners included allegations and evidence of many felonies by numerous agents of the NYPD – all relating to the death of Sheu – including his illegal detention, illegal search and seizure, death threats, illegal removal of his body from a hospital, providing false evidence to the Medical Examiner and potential complicity in a murder. Most significantly, the letter alerted the Mayor and Commissioner that the NYPD had failed to investigate a death ruled as “undetermined” by the Medical Examiner, as they are obligated to do.
By refusing to investigate thoroughly documented allegations of crimes by his subordinates, and failing to enforce laws violated by them, the NYPD Commissioner effectively became complicit in these acts, establishing them as systemic corruption in the NYPD.
NEW YORK DEPARTMENT OF INVESTIGATION: “NEW YORK CITY’S WATCHDOG”
The “watchdog agency” over corruption — involving corruption of individual city employees, or systemic corruption in a government agency — in the New York City government is the Department of Investigation (DOI). According to their website:“[DOI] Investigations may involve any agency, officer, elected official or employee of the City… As New York City’s watchdog, DOI’s strategy attacks corruption comprehensively through systemic investigations that lead to high-impact arrests, preventive controls and operational reforms that improve the way the City runs.”
So it was the DOI that the BSN contacted in May 2014, to report corruption by NYPD officers, and systemic corruption in the NYPD as an institution. BSN’s initial contact at the DOI was Lee Contes, Assistant to DOI Chief Investigator John Kantor. [Kantor was also known as “Assistant Commissioner” of the DOI] In an email to Contes of May 12, 2014, the BSN described the mortgage fraud, illegal detention and death threats by NYPD Detectives, Sheu’s suspicious death and the ongoing cover up. A follow up letter, dated May 16, stressed that the complaint was against the NYPD, and further enumerated the specific complaints against the NYPD.
Contes replied that he would forward the case to DOI Chief of Investigations, John Kantor and that we would be hearing back from Kantor “within a day or two”. Interestingly, Kantor formerly held a high-level position at the famously corrupt NY Department of Buildings during the period when Judge Golia’s brother, James Golia, was the Assistant Commissioner.
Three weeks passed and Kantor never responded. On May 30th, the BSN wrote directly to Kantor, making it clear that if we did not hear from him by the end of the day, we would be reporting the case, and the DOI’s delinquency, to Mayor de Blasio.
DOI CHIEF OF INVESTIGATIONS JOHN KANTOR TRANSFERS THE CASE TO EDDIE LEBRON OF THE NYPD / DOI SQUAD
Kantor responded the same day, confirming receipt of the email to Contes, and promising to review the complaint. The following Monday, Kantor confirmed that the DOI had initiated an investigation: “DOI has thoroughly reviewed the information that you have provided to Mr. Contes as well as the further information that is available on your website regarding the death of Mr. Sheu… Going forward, your contact should be Detective Eddie Lebron of DOI’s NYPD Squad.”
Immediately thereafter, Galison contacted Lebron by phone and then by email, and requested that he and Milton Allimadi, two of the primary sources in the Sheu case, and the possessors of key documentation, be interviewed in person by Lebron.
DETECTIVE EDDIE LEBRON OF THE NYPD/DOI SQUAD CONFIRMS THAT THE DOI IS INVESTIGATING THE CASE
Lebron Contacted the BSN on June 12th, confirming that a DOI investigation of the Sheu case was underway: “The NYC Department of Investigation ( DOI ) is currently conducting an investigation into this matter. I am not able to meet with you in person at this time. I understand your desire to assist in this process but certain investigative steps must be completed, before anyone at DOI speaks with you. Please feel free to call me or correspond by email with any documentation or information that could assist in this investigation.”
BSN received no further communication from the DOI or the NYPD/DOI Squad after this letter. No requests for information, no updates, and no invitation to an interview. In fact, the DOI failed to respond to numerous emails sent to them by the BSN requesting a follow up report.
BSN tried many times to contact Lebron at the NYPD/DOI Squad by phone but we were either kept on hold indefinitely, or told we would be called back. When BSN finally managed to connect with Lebron, on July 1, 2014, he refused to provide any information about the status of the case, but confirmed 13 times in that conversation that the DOI was investigating the case,and that he was the sole contact person for the Blackstar News. In our final conversation, Lebron assured the BSN that we would be contacted after certain preliminary steps were taken, but we were never contacted again.
There is a very good reason why the NYPD/DOI Squad never got back to BSN. It turns out that the NYPD/DOI Squad is simply an NYPD detective squad, and as such has no jurisdiction over cases involving misconduct or criminality by NYPD personnel. The only agencies in the NYPD with such jurisdiction are the Bureau of Internal Affairs (IAB) and the Chief of Detective’s Bureau.
The Role of the NYPD/DOI Squad
The sole function of the NYPD/DOI Squad is to aid investigations at the request of one of the various Inspector Generals within the DOI, except for Office of Inspector General for NYPD Affairs, OIG/NYPD, whom they are expressly prohibited to assist, due to obvious conflict of interest. A detective from the NYPD/DOI Squad who requested anonymity stated: “We have nothing to do the OIG/NYPD part of it.. apparently they investigate us, the NYPD, I guess policies and procedures and stuff like that. So we don’t work with them, because basically they’re investigating us”.
Thomas Mahoney, Chief of investigations for the Office of the Inspector General for the NYPD also confirmed this, stating: “the DOI/NYPD never handled complaints about the police department”.
THE NYPD/DOI SQUAD “INVESTIGATION” CITED BY LEBRON NEVER HAPPENED
As noted, the NYPD/DOI Squad is not part of the DOI. The only Inspector General in the DOI authorized to investigate the NYPD is the OIG/NYPD, which later confirmed that they had no knowledge of the Sheu case before July 19, 2014. So Lebron’s statement of June 12, that the “The NYC Department of Investigation ( DOI ) is currently conducting an investigation” is patently false. There was no investigation by the DOI; and all of Lebron’s communications with the BSN were fraudulent, intended only to mislead the BSN into believing that the Sheu case was being investigated, when it was not; by anybody.
Kantor, the DOI chief of Investigations also lied that there was an “investigation.” On June 30, 2014, Kantor wrote: “DOI is continuing to obtain relevant records regarding Mr. Sheu’s death from several agencies. We have received some of the requested records, but we need to obtain further records.
UPDATE: DOI CONFIRMS THAT NEITHER THE DOI NOR THE NYPD/DOI SQUAD EVER INVESTIGATED THE SHEU CASE
On December 22, 2015 the BSN filed a FOIL request with the DOI, demanding:
1) All documents pertaining in any way to the “review” mentioned by John Kantor in his email of June 30th, 2014, including the “original documentation regarding Mr. Sheu’s death…” and
2) All documents pertaining in any way to the “investigation” by The NYC Department of Investigation mentioned in the below e-mail from Detective Lebron, including the investigation, number, status of case and names of the investigators involved”
In her response of December 29, 2015, Elyse Hirschorn, Chief Investigative Attorney for the DOI wrote: “Neither the Department of Investigation nor the [NYPD] Department of Investigation Squad ever investigated this matter.”
Hirschorn then attempted to bend the truth by continuing: “Rather, the issues you raised were forwarded to the Inspector General for the New York Police Department (“OIG/NYPD”) for appropriate action.”
In fact, neither DOI nor the NYPD/DOI transferred the case to the OIG.
The Sheu complaint was actually introduced to the OIG by The Blackstar News in a letter of July 19, 2014, and Inspector General Philip Eure and his deputy Sandra Musemeschi, both stated that they had never heard of the case or the name Sunny Sheu before being notified by BSN.
DOI Assistant Commissioner Jon Kantor knew that the NYPD/DOI Squad is not part of the DOI and that it is forbidden from investigating on behalf of the NYPD/DOI. Therefore; when he gave the case to the NYPD/DOI Squad, he was knowingly giving the case to an agency without jurisdiction, and removing it from the DOI’s legitimate jurisdiction. He buried it.
KANTOR APPARENTLY CONCEALED THE COMPLAINT FROM THE SOLE AGENCY WITH JURISDICTION OVER THE CASE; THE OFFICE OF THE INSPECTOR GENERAL/NYPD.
Had the Sunny Sheu complaint arrived at Kantor’s desk before March 28, 2014, they may have had reason to refer the complaint to the NYPD, but only to the IAB or Detective’s Squad, which were at that time the only city agencies with jurisdiction over NYPD misconduct. On that date however, in the wake of the IAB’s mishandling of the Eric Garner scandal and amid great fanfare, Mayor de Blasio created a new agency within the DOI, specifically to investigate NYPD improprieties; the Office of the Inspector General for the NYPD (OIG/NYPD). After the creation of the OIG/NYPD, on May 28, 2014, any complaint to the DOI regarding the NYPD was referred directly to the OIG/NYPD.
On July 2, 2014. the BSN called the DOI for an update, and asked to speak to Lebron at the NYPD/DOI squad. The receptionist asked what the call regarded, and when told that it was a complaint against the NYPD, she responded: “the NYPD/DOI squad does not investigate complaints against the NYPD… that kind of thing is handled by the Office of the Inspector General for the NYPD”. Despite the BSN’s insistence that the case had been investigated by the DOI/NYPD squad for over a month, the receptionist connected us to the OIG/NYPD.
Thus, after nearly two months of communication with the DOI, this receptionist was the first person at the DOI to mention that cases involving complaints about the NYPD were handled by the OIG.
The BSN immediately wrote to Lebron, Kantor and Contes, demanding an explanation of why our complaint had been withheld from the OIG, and asking: “Have you or Mr. Kantor brought the Sunny Sheu case to the attention of Mr. Eure? …” a reference to Philip Eure, Inspector General of the OIG.
Lebron, Kantor and Contes never responded to this letter, and the BSN never heard from them again.
BSN SUBMITS THE CASE TO THE OFFICE OF INSPECTOR GENERAL FOR THE NYPD
On July 19, 2014, the Blackstar News filed a formal complaint with the Office of the Inspector General (“OIG”) This was in the form of a certified letter directly addressed to Eure, the Inspector General for NYPD Affairs (“OIG/NYPD”) and his deputy, Sandra Musumechi, both of whom confirmed receipt.
Musumechi and Eure both stated, on the record, that prior to receiving the July 19 letter, the OIG/NYPD had never received any information about the Sunny Sheu case, had never heard the name, and had never been contacted about it by NY DOI NYPD Squad. This confirms unequivocally that Lebron and the NYPD/DOI Squad had concealed the case and their “investigation” entirely from the OIG.The July 19, 2014 letter to Eure discussed not only the circumstances of Sheu’s death and the ensuing cover up. It also emphasized the cover up by Lebron and the NYPD/DOI Squad, which, being part of the NYPD, is firmly under the OIG’s jurisdiction.
INSPECTOR PHILIP EURE CONTINUES THE COVER UP
When Eure was personally selected by DOI Commissioner Mark Peters to lead the Office of the Inspector General for NYPD, he was advertised as an independent “outsider” with no loyalties to the NYPD, who would sweep the department clean without regard for entrenched power. Mayor de Blasio called Eure “One of the nation’s premiere police accountability experts”.
The July 19 letter informs Eure, that a case involving possible complicity by the NYPD in a murder, which has been covered up by the NYPD, had been hijacked, buried and concealed from his agency by an NYPD agency (the NYPD/DOI), operating out of the very same building in which Eure was fighting NYPD corruption.
Did Eure demand an investigation of the NYPD/DOI’s role in covering up the case? Remarkably, Eure never responded to the July 19, 2014 letter, nor did he request any emails, phone recordings and other documentation of the NYPD/DOI’s phony investigation. Indeed, to our knowledge, no branch of the DOI or any other law enforcement agency has ever investigated the cover up of the Sunny Sheu case by the NYPD/DOI Squad.
After many insistent follow up e-mail messages and calls by BSN, however, Thomas Mahoney, Chief Investigator the Inspector General’s office finally spoke to the BSN about the Sunny Sheu case, and finally consented to interview BSN Publisher Allimadi and reporter Galison.
The Office of the Inspector General Interviews Galison and Allimadi
On January 16, 2015 at the DOI Headquarters, BSN met with OIG Investigator Edward Sanchez and Chief Investigator Joe Carinha. From the outset, it was clear that this would be “good cop/bad cop” scenario, with Sanchez seemingly attentive and Carinha being dismissive. Carinha even implied that Sheu had brought the illegal detention and death threats upon himself, by placing a note in the Judge’s mailbox. — he didn’t seem concerned about the raft of illegal acts involved with Sheu’s detention and interrogation, not to mention his eventual death and the ensuing cover up.
The BSN came prepared to answer questions clarifying and expanding upon on the evidence provided in the July 19 and accompanying documents. For example, Allimadi was expecting to be asked to present his testimony that Dr. Ahmed had told him that “foul play” was involved in Sunny Sheu’s death. Allimadi’s account is critically important to the case; if Ahmed was coerced into lying about the head trauma, then the people who coerced him were powerful enough to compel a doctor into committing a felony (accessory to murder after the fact), and interested in protecting the perpetrators. Ahmed’s confession of “foul play” is the key to the entire case, and should be of utmost concern to any honest investigator.
But Allimadi’s account was immediately dismissed by the investigators as irrelevant. When Allimadi offered to sign a sworn affidavit and take a polygraph test to confirm his statement, Carinha objected that “lie detector tests are not allowed as evidence in a trial”. The investigators ignored the fact that sworn affidavits are often presented as evidence in criminal cases, and a voluntary lie detector test may be certainly used as a basis for suspicion. Finally, when Galison asked if Ahmed would be questioned at all, Carinha replied “only if he chooses to come in…we can’t force him”.
Allimadi also found it interesting that the investigators asked whether at any point he had had any concerns for his personal safety during the course of investigating the story.
The OIG Neglects to Investigate The Key Questions of the Case
During the interview, in fact, neither Sanchez nor Carinha asked Allimadi or Galison a single question regarding the case. The only questions were asked by Allimadi and Galison, and while all the answers were vague and evasive, some revealed important clues as to the nature of the OIG’s “investigation”, specifically, that the OIG:
 Never subpoenaed the CAT scans made by ER Doctor Zeeshan Ahmed, who falsely told Sunny’s friends and the NYPD that they showed no indication of head trauma. If the CAT scans showed unmistakable fractures to Sheu’s skull, this would indicate serious questions. Did Ahmed knowingly allow Sheu to die without proper treatment?
 Never investigated the disposition of Sheu’s computer after his death or even inquired about its whereabouts. The computer would hold evidence of the NYPD’s illegal surveillance of Sheu and hacking of his emails before his murder, which Sheu reported to the BSN and, under oath, to the FBI.
 Never interviewed Dr. Zeeshan Ahmed, the ER Doctor who concealed Sheu’s fatal head trauma and admitted to Allimadi that “foul play” was involved in Sheu’s death.
 Never investigated the identity of the “witness” that the NYPD, in a fraudulent memo, told the M.E. had seen Sheu fall, whose existence would exonerate the NYPD and whose non- existence would suggest an NYPD conspiracy to mislead the M.E.
When reminded that BSN had obtained tapes of the 911 calls through FOIL and that all the witnesses mentioned a man lying in the street and none mentioned seeing a man falling down, Carinha then replied: “Just because what you hear on 911, doesn’t mean that later on when somebody was interviewed, that they may not add a little bit more…”
When reminded that there was no documentation of any interview with this alleged witness, no mention in the responding officer’s notebook, no DD5, in fact none of the many mandatory official documents reflecting the existence of an interview, and that both Queens Assistant District Attorney Laura Weinstock and a 109 Precinct Detective had told the BSN that there was no witness, Carinha replied: “Well, you just said that [the NYPD] sent something to the M.E’s office so there is something in writing that said that somebody saw him fall, so something is in writing, right?” (In other words, according to Carinha’s logic, the NYPD memo mentioning the witness must be true simply because the memo itself existed).
 Never investigated the fraudulent “investigation” by their colleagues at the DOI/NYPD, Squad, or the DOI’s attempt to hijack the case from the OIG and bury it.
 Never investigated the NYPD’s failure to investigate a death ruled as “undetermined” by the Medical Examiner.
At the conclusion of the forty-five minute interview, Allimadi cut to the chase by asking Carinha a simple question: “Do you see [anything in the Sunny Sheu case] that looks suspicious?” to which Carinha answered without hesitation: “No”.
SHEU HAD “LOTS OF INJURIES; NOT JUST TO HIS HEAD”: MEDICAL EXAMINER
Despite the investigators’ efforts to be opaque, Sanchez did provide one fact of great significance. He stated that he interviewed Dr. Michael Greenberg, the Medical Examiner who autopsied Sheu’s body and subpoenaed his medical records, and according to Sanchez “[the Medical Examiner] determined that there was lots of injuries – not just to the head – and the matter was undetermined”.
This is a bombshell: how could Sheu have sustained lots of his injuries to different parts of his body, simply by falling over and hitting his head?
“Lots of injuries” is consistent with a man fighting for his life, not with a man having a seizure and falling straight down on the ground and into a coma. It also re-emphasizes the question of why Dr. Ahmed, who examined Sheu thoroughly in the hours before his death, told Sheu’s friends that Sheu suffered no external injuries at all. How could Ahmed, in the course of four hours of intensive life saving procedures, have failed to notice significant injuries all over Sheu’s body, in addition to the fatal “trauma to the head with multiple skull fractures and brain injuries”?
BSN LETTER TO OIG CHIEF INVESTIGATOR THOMAS MAHONEY RE: CARINHA
On January 18, 2015 the BSN wrote a letter to OIG Chief Inspector Thomas Mahoney – once again sent by certified mail and copied to Philip Eure, Mark Peters and Mayor Bill de Blasio – entitled “Profound Concerns Regarding Your Senior Investigator, Joseph Carinha”, and expressing the BSN’s concern over his conduct regarding the Sheu case. BSN has never received a response from Mahoney, Eure, Peters or Mayor de Blasio.
THE OIG’S VIOLATION OF NY FREEDOM OF INFORMATION LAW
Stonewalled by a total blackout of communication from the OIG, the BSN decided to request documents from them through the NY State Freedom of information law (FOIL). If the OIG had done any investigation on the case at all, we reasoned, they would have had to have subpoenaed, at the bare minimum the following:
– The name of the party that ordered the detention of Sunny Sheu in January 2009.
– The records of the “interview” of Sheu by the Detectives who detained him.
– The name of the party that ordered the removal of Sheu’s body from the New York Hospital of Queens.
– The names of the police officers who removed Sheu’s body from the Queens Hospital.
– The name of the alleged “witness” who allegedly saw Sheu collapse while walking.
– Any NYPD paperwork of the “interview” in which an alleged witness said he saw Sheu collapse.
– The NYPD documents reflecting the false cause and false manner of Sheu’s death.
Under FOIL law, the OIG would, at the very least, be required to state whether each individual requested document was in their possession, if they were available to the public or not, and if not, precisely why not. Of course, according to the NYPD, and OIG there was no crime and no evidence of a crime, and thus no investigation. So what could be the basis on which to keep any documents secret?
On January 19, 2015, the BSN sent a request for documents to the FOIL officer at the OIG, Assim Rehman, who is also the OIG’s legal counsel. The request was unambiguous. It asked for “all documents” pertaining to 24 separate and distinct documents, relating to the death of Sunny Sheu and its cover up by the NYPD.
Under FOIL law – by default – every document generated by the government must be made available to the public, except documents which may be withheld or redacted because they fall under specific “exceptions” which are detailed in the FOIL law.
The response of Rehman was to utterly ignore the rules and precedent of FOIL case law. Rehman not only refused to provide a single document requested; he failed to specify the exception for each requested, illegally grouped all of the 24 demands together and denied them all in one sentence: “Any material which may be in the possession of this department that would be responsive to your request would be exempt from disclosure would interfere with law enforcement investigations”.
By this meticulously evasive wording, Rehman tried to skirt the pertinent question of which documents the OIG possessed, so that it could not be determined whether the OIG had actually investigated the case or not.
WHY THE SUNNY SHEU CASE IS “SYSTEMIC”
Though it may seem a matter of semantics, the question of whether the BSN complaints to the DOI represent “systemic” problems with the NYPD or not, is the key to their jurisdiction. According to the OIG website, cases deemed “systemic” or regarding “policy or procedure” are under the unique jurisdiction of the OIG, and those considered “complaints against individual officers”, are under the jurisdiction of the NYPD Internal Affairs Bureau (IAB).
At the very least, the illegal detention of Sheu by NYPD Detectives, during which Sheu alleged including to FBI agent Rachel Rojas in the New York office that he was abducted against his will, his wallet confiscated, his documents photocopied and that he was threatened with death, is the ultimate example of “stop and frisk”; one of the “systemic” issues that the OIG is specifically mandated to investigate.
But it is the failure of the Police Commissioner to order an investigation of a death ruled as “undetermined” by the Medical Examiner that makes this case “systemic” prima facie. The decision to not investigate a death ruled “undetermined” cannot possibly be the act of an individual officer, especially when two consecutive NYPD Commissioners were informed of the M.E.’s ruling which then requires that the death be investigated.
According to John Fudenberg, former President of the International Association of Coroners and Medical Examiners, “If a Medical Examiner has a case of blunt force trauma to the head, and they can’t tell if it’s a from a strike or a fall, they should and do depend on the police to attempt to get them more information… Homicide detectives and medical legal professionals are trained to treat every death as a homicide until they can prove otherwise, but especially if there is any indication that it might have actually been a homicide”.
THE OIG REFERS THE CASE TO THE NYPD INTERNAL AFFAIRS BUREAU, BUT WITHHOLDS CRITICAL INFORMATION FROM THEM
A letter to BSN dated April 14th, 2015 from Thomas Mahoney of the OIG, states: “We have completed our preliminary investigation of your complaint… With respect to your specific concerns regarding the death of Mr. Sheu… Given the content of your July 23rd [sic] complaint [originally sent to Eure on July 19, and dated as such] , we believe that the NYPD internal affairs Bureau (IAB) would be an appropriate investigative agency… therefore we will forward IAB a copy of your complaint so that they may review the matter further”.
Mahoney’s letter certainly implies that it was the July 19 complaint that was sent to the IAB for further review, but incredibly, according to a source at the IAB, the “complaint” that the OIG sent them was not the July 19 complaint. Our source, who examined the entire file transferred from the OIG reported that the only document provided to the IAB by the OIG was the May 12 letter to Contes. He stated: “… April 8th, that’s when they sent the letter…. The only [complaint] they sent was [the email from] May 12th, it was basically your correspondence with Mr. Contes. That’s it”. The source further confirmed that the July 19 letter was not provided by the OIG.
Why did Mahoney send the wrong letter to the IAB? Perhaps because the difference between the May 12 letter and the July 19 letter is critical to the jurisdiction of the case. The hijacking and burying of the case by the DOI/NYPD squad is detailed in the July letter but absent in the May letter, because it had not yet occurred. The OIG/NYPD Squad’s fraudulent “investigation” not only adds to the long list of NYPD officers complicit in the cover up, it further establishes that the transgressions in the case are systemic, and therefore under the exclusive jurisdiction of the OIG.
Leaving out the documented allegations against the NYPD/DOI also gets them off the hook.
ACCORDING TO THE IAB, THE OIG DID “NO INVESTIGATION” ON THE CASE BEFORE TRANSFERRING IT TO THEM
Our source at the IAB also revealed that the dossier sent to the IAB by the OIG indicated that the OIG had done no investigation on the case, because no results of any investigation were included in the dossier. “I don’t think [the OIG] did any investigation into it” he noted.
This means that either the OIG did no investigation whatsoever on the case, or they withheld the results of their investigation from the IAB when they transferred the case to them. If they did no investigation, then on what basis did Rehman deny the FOIL requests based on “an ongoing law enforcement investigation”? And what were they doing for the nine months between receiving the complaint in July and sending it to the IAB in April?
We know from OIG Investigator Sanchez himself that he learned from Medical Examiner Greenberg that Sheu had suffered “lots of wounds” all over his body, and that this important fact was never provided to the IAB. What other findings of the nine-month OIG/NYPD “investigation” were concealed from the IAB?
What the DOI’s FOIL responses tell us is that the NYPD/DOI Squad claimed to investigate, but did not (in order to bury the complaint) while the OIG actually did investigate, and then claimed that the did not, in order to keep their results from other agencies.
NYPD INTERNAL AFFAIRS SITS ON THE CASE FOR SIX MONTHS WITH NO INVESTIGATION, THEN TRANSFERS IT TO THE DETECTIVE BUREAU WHICH CLOSE IT IN DAYS
The NYPD IAB held the case for six months, and conducted no investigation, according to our source. On September 19, 2015, the IAB transferred the case to the NYPD Chief of Detectives Bureau. The detective delegated to investigate the case was Sgt. Anthony Bocola.
Bocola confirmed that neither the DOI, OIG nor the IAB had furnished him with any findings resulting from their respective investigations, and only furnished him with the original May 12. 2014 complaint to John Kantor. This means that Bocola had no knowledge of the complaint to Inspector General Philip Eure which included documentation of the fraudulent claims by the NYPD/DOI Squad that they had investigated the case.
Although Bocola refused to comment on his investigation of the Sunny Sheu case, one very important aspect is apparent; the “investigation” was astonishingly brief. Bocola received the complaint on September 19, 2015. Bocola’s commanding officer, Lieutenant Simmons, refused to give a specific date for the closing of the case, but he told the BSN “it was closed in September,” of 2015.
Since September has only 30 days, this means that Bocola’s investigation lasted no more than 11 days.
These are the facts and issues he was able to “investigate” before closing the case: the illegal detention of Sheu; the death threats; the false statements of Dr. Ahmed regarding the injuries sustained by Sheu; Dr. Ahmed’s admission to Allimadi that “foul play” was involved in the death; the unauthorized removal of Sheu’s body by NYPD detectives; the non-existent “witness” story sent to the Medical Examiner by the NYPD; the false report given by the 109 precinct detective about the cause and manner of death; the unauthorized cremation of the body by a party claiming to be the Executor of Sheu’s estate; the violation of FOIL law by the NYPD; and above all, the NYPD’s failure to investigate a case ruled “undetermined” by the Medical Examiner for over five and a half years.
Moreover, Bocola managed to complete the “investigation” without interviewing any witnesses or requesting any information from the BSN. In fact the BSN was never even told that the case had been transferred to the Detective Bureau or that the case had been closed.
BSN only found this out through our source at the IAB, two months after the fact.