Jersey Journal - April 29 2005:
'Dirty docker' license targeted
Friday, April 29, 2005
By RONALD LEIR
JOURNAL STAFF WRITER
The Waterfront Commission of New York Harbor is looking to revoke the
longshoreman's license of Ralph Esposito, one of four "dirty
dockers" who entered guilty pleas last week in connection an
alleged "money for work " scheme on the Hudson County piers.
Esposito, 52, of Lincroft, a former Bayonne ILA Local 1588 shop steward
at Global Terminal, pleaded guilty to the third-degree crime of commercial
bribery, admitting that he pocketed kickbacks from longshoremen between
1995 and 2002 in return for preferential treatment.
Waterfront Commission Executive Director Thomas DeMaria said yesterday
the commission had tried to negotiate with Esposito to get him to surrender
his license but that Esposito's attorney refused.
"We're going to do whatever is necessary to revoke his license
because of his accepting money for (favored) jobs on the pier," DeMaria
Esposito, who has been registered to work on the docks since 1979,
would be entitled to an administrative hearing at the commission, once
the commission moves to take away his work permit, DeMaria said.
"We're going to move swiftly for revocation," DeMaria said.
If his permit is revoked, Esposito could apply for its restoration
after a year.
Other waterfront figures who admitted wrongdoing on the piers last
week were: Nicholas Furina, 73, of Warren, the former hiring agent
for P&O Ports of North America, of Jersey City, whom the government
called a Genovese crime family soldier and the "boss" of
the shakedown scheme; Furina's son-in-law, Nicholas Romano, 50, of
Warren; and Aniello "Sonny" Bello, 69, of Bayonne.
All face sentencing July 14 before state Superior Court Judge Kevin
DeMaria said the guilty pleas will send a message out to the piers "that
crime doesn't pay."
Meanwhile, members of Local 1588 have been permitted to vote for two
new shop stewards, with another election is planned soon. Elections
for executive posts in the union may be coming this summer, one federal
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