The City of Hartford Dillon Stadium deal may have all the potential allure of a Hollywood screenplay when all is said and done. The sad part though is that it is not made up, it is the reality of the incompetence of the Segarra Administration and the heads buried in the sand of the Hartford City Council under the direction of Council president Shawn Wooden. Notice I didn't say Wooden's leadership because that has essentially been non-existent.
Many are asking how this situation got so far out of control. Part of it is by the intimidation of the reigning bully on the playground, Councilman Ken Kennedy. Council members, including Dr. Larry Deustch and others, were quickly and loudly shouted down when they would ask any questions about Kennedy's sweetheart deal he was attempting to pull off. Now history is showing that Deutsch's concerns were well founded, as the deal continues to unravel.
But there are still many more questions than answers as to how a dirty deal got this far so quickly. Many of the questions will most likely be answered by Investigators as they dig into the matter. According to sources, the Hartford Police Department has at least one fraud detective working with Inspectors from the State's Attorney's Office digging into the matter as well as Federal Investigators from the US Attorney's Office. Hartford Police Deputy Chief Brian Foley has not responded to requests to comment on the investigation other than to confirm the existence.
Last night I referred to the possibility of a romantic relationship between a high ranking official in Hartford's Development Services Division and the overpayment of invoices. Now it seems that is just the tip of the iceberg.
According to sources , as well as documents received through an FOI request, one of the people in Development Services who processed James Duckett's payments as well as other payments for the Dillon project was Dr. Elda Sinani.
Sinani has a very interesting fraudulent past and has admitted in Federal Court to conducting a scheme that may have fleeced as much as $2.8 million from the Feds through a tax cheat scheme. The press release from the US Attorney's Office detailing Sinani's activities are below.
So I guess the $1million plus in possible over payments to Duckett and his co-horts probably pales in comparison to Sinani's tax fraud scheme. But it raises even bigger questions about City Hall operations.
Second chances and all are good, but do you really give someone a second chance to commit possibly millions in fraud after they have already admitted to a fraud scheme once already?
I have the feeling this is going to get much worse before it goes away. Luckily several of the people that created the problem will also be going away soon also.
Stay tuned, the information is developing by the minute with every phone call,. Scholarships, jobs, and so much more to eventually come out.