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Monday, May 28, 2012

5th Rabbi Pleads Guilty In Solomon Dwek Sting

Solomon Dwek

TRENTON — A Brooklyn, N.Y., rabbi is the last of five rabbis arrested in 2009 in a federal corruption sting to plead guilty in a New Jersey money laundering case.

Federal prosecutors say 60-year-old Lavel Schwartz has pleaded guilty to a money-laundering conspiracy charge in Trenton.

Schwartz admitted Thursday that he and his brother, Brooklyn Rabbi Mordchai Fish, had agreed to launder what they were told were illicit funds for failed Monmouth County developer Solomon Dwek. Dwek became a cooperating witness for the federal government after his own bank fraud arrest.

As part of their scheme, about $200,000 to $400,000 was moved through purported charities, with Dwek getting cash back through an underground money transfer network. Fish took a 10 percent cut.

Fish is to be sentenced June 18, Schwartz on Oct. 22.

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