Inner City Press

In Other Media-eg New Statesman, AJE, FP, Georgia, NYTAzerbaijan, CSM Click here to contact us     .

These reports are usually available through Google News and on Lexis-Nexis

Share |   

Follow on TWITTER

Home -

These reports are usually available through Google News and on Lexis-Nexis


(FP Twitterati 100, 2013)

ICP on YouTube

More: InnerCityPro
Sept 24, 2013

UN: Sri Lanka


FOIA Finds  

Google, Asked at UN About Censorship, Moved to Censor the Questioner, Sources Say, Blaming UN - Update - Editorial

Support this work by buying this book

Click on cover for secure site orders

also includes "Toxic Credit in the Global Inner City"




Bank Beat

Freedom of Information

How to Contact Us

Handlers Indicted For Day Care Fraud Gets Briefing Schedule on Return of Cell Phones

By Matthew Russell Lee, Patreon Maxwell book

SDNY COURTHOUSE, Feb 1 – Isidore Handler, Martin Handler, Menachem Lieberman, Harold Schwartz and Ben Werczberger were indicted and then presented on January 11 before U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York Magistrate Judge Robert W. Lehrburger.

Inner City Press was there, the only media in the Mag Court. There was an argument about the defendants phones being searched, see below.

  The charges include wire fraud, theft of government funds, aggravated identity theft and money laundering.

The indictment, while ordered unsealed on January 11, was still not in PACER - in its place were two copies of the order to unseal. Inner City Press has obtained and published it on its DocumentCloud, here. 

Summary: They are charged with participating in schemes to steal millions of dollars from government-funded childcare programs for low-income families, including by stealing proceeds from a fake after-school program that received millions in funding and by using funds to purchase private real estate, items at auction, and a luxury vehicle.

  The defendants were ordered released on bond on January 11.

There was an argument about phones seized from the defendants. Defense counsel wanted to litigate before any search warrant can be obtained. But Assistant US Attorney Daniel Wolf said the issue wasn't ripe, that they could move to suppress later. 

 Judge Lehrburger recommended that defense counsel write a letter to the assigned District Judge Jennifer H. Rearden.

On January 18, they did, arguing that "the government has not set forth the basis for the agents' belief that - at the time of the seizure - they had probable cause to believe that these specific phones contained evidence of criminality." And some phones, they say, were not in plain view. Motion on Patreon here

On January 19, Judge Rearden held the arriagnment, and moved on to trial date. Inner City Press thread here, more on Patreon here

On January 20, Judge Rearden granted an extension to comply with conditions of bond until January 25: "re: extention to time to comply with final bail condition.... we respectfully request that the Court grant an extension until Wednesday, January 25th, for Mr. Handler to comply with this third and final bail condition. ENDORSEMENT: Defendant Martin Handler's request is hereby GRANTED. SO ORDERED. (Signed by Judge Jennifer H. Rearden on 1/20/2023)"

On February 1, Judge Rearden ruled: "ORDER as to Martin Handler, Menachem Lieberman, Harold Schwartz, Isidore Handler, Ben Werczberger: On January 18, 2023, Defendants moved, pursuant to Federal Rule of Criminal Procedure 41(g), for the return of their cell phones seized by the Government. ECF No. 25. In connection with that motion, the parties are directed to file supplemental letters addressing the legal standard set forth in Ferreira v. United States, 354 F. Supp. 2d 406 (S.D.N.Y. 2005), and its application to Defendants' cell phones: "To prevail on a Rule [41(g)] motion, a criminal defendant must demonstrate that (1)he is entitled to lawful possession of the seized property; (2) the property is not contraband; and (3) either the seizure was illegal or the government's need for the property as evidence has ended." Id. at 409. The Government shall file its letter by February 3, 2023. Defendants Handler, Lieberman, Handler, and Werczberger shall file their letter by February 7, 2023. The parties' respective letters shall not exceed three single-spaced pages. (Responses due by 2/3/2023. Replies due by 2/7/2023) (Signed by Judge Jennifer H. Rearden on 2/1/2023)."

Inner City Press will continue to cover this case.

The case is US v. Handler, et al., 23-cr-4 (Rearden / Lehrburger)


Your support means a lot. As little as $5 a month helps keep us going and grants you access to exclusive bonus material on our Patreon page. Click here to become a patron.


Feedback: Editorial [at]
SDNY Press Room 480, front cubicle
500 Pearl Street, NY NY 10007 USA

Mail: Box 20047, Dag Hammarskjold Station NY NY 10017

Reporter's mobile (and weekends): 718-716-3540

Other, earlier Inner City Press are listed here, and some are available in the ProQuest service, and now on Lexis-Nexis.

 Copyright 2006-2023 Inner City Press, Inc. To request reprint or other permission, e-contact Editorial [at]