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Tags: george norcross | phil norcross | new jersey | platkin

N.J. Charges Against Norcross Brothers 'Entirely Baseless': Lawyers

By    |   Friday, 21 June 2024 09:52 PM EDT

The recent charges against New Jersey Democrat political kingmaker George Norcross III, his brother, Philip Norcross, and four other defendants are nothing more than a "political attack masquerading as a criminal case," attorneys for the accused said Friday.

New Jersey Attorney General Matt Platkin announced racketeering charges against the six defendants earlier this week.

"The charges are entirely baseless and the statements Mr. Platkin made in support of them are blatantly false," attorneys with the law firm of Critchley, Kinum & Luria, who are representing the Norcrosses, said in a statement.

Platkin, who is also a Democrat, accused the defendants of using political influence through extortion and threats in Camden.

The charges detailed in the 111-page indictment lay out more than a decade of allegations, including on tax credits and waterfront development.

"What's being alleged here, it's a wild story, a fanciful story woven together, a concocted criminal enterprise," Kevin Marino, an attorney for one of the defendants, told the New Jersey Monitor.

"I don't see a single allegation here that rises to the level of criminal activity," he said.

At a press conference this week, Platkin accused the Norcross group of having "manipulated government programs and processes" for their own financial benefit, Politico reported

"Instead of contributing to the successes of the city of Camden, through a series of criminal acts alleged in the state's case, the Norcross enterprise took the Camden waterfront all for themselves."

But the Norcross' attorneys argued Friday that the allegations "are about actions George and Phil and so many others took to revitalize Camden, once the nation's poorest and most violent city and now a shining example of urban renewal."

Camden, they said, is a "demonstrably stronger and better place than it was just a decade ago," adding that the city is the "safest it has been in 50 years, with homicides down by 70%."

The city's education system has also been "reimagined" through the creation of neighborhood "renaissance schools" in partnership with the NJEA, the law firm pointed out.

"In 2022, more than 400 Camden graduates went on to college, up from just [three] in 2011," the lawyers said. 

There has also been "unprecedented investment" and thousands of new jobs have been created, along with massive investments in "everything from roads and parks to athletic fields for school-age children and new housing," the attorneys argued.

They accused Platkin of trying to "thwart Camden's renaissance" to pursue a "personal vendetta."

"The tax credits at the heart of his allegations have been repeatedly reviewed, audited, approved, and awarded by state authorities — including by the Attorney General’s Office Mr. Platkin heads," the law firm said.

"Mr. Platkin has turned the Camden success story into a twisted narrative of criminal conduct that is false in every way," the statement concluded.

Sandy Fitzgerald

Sandy Fitzgerald has more than three decades in journalism and serves as a general assignment writer for Newsmax covering news, media, and politics. 

© 2024 Newsmax. All rights reserved.


US
The recent charges against New Jersey Democrat political kingmaker George Norcross III, his brother Phil, and four other defendants are nothing more than a "political attack masquerading as a criminal case," attorneys for the accused said Friday.
george norcross, phil norcross, new jersey, platkin
465
2024-52-21
Friday, 21 June 2024 09:52 PM
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