Today was a red-letter day for Barry Minkow and Sam Antar, who have provided DeepCapture so many Rosencrantz and Guildenstern moments. To summarize:
1) Barry Minkow turned out to be, once again, a crook. See Bloomberg: Minkow in Plea Talks With US Prosecutors Over Fraud Case, Lawyer Says, and LA Times: Barry Minkow to plead guilty to insider trading.
2) Sam Antar went unusually silent about his long-time colleague and friend, Barry Minkow, resorting once again to spewing hateful off-topic smears on message boards rather than address why it is that Sam has spent years working with and defending a fellow who can now look forward to another 5 years of jailhouse stew.
So for those new to this tale, let me fill in some missing pieces. For documentation of all the following claims, see “The ties that bind Sam Antar and Barry Minkow” and “Why Are Fortune Magazine and the New York Financial Media Suddenly Pimping Sam Antar the Crook?” (Here is more on Minkow, and more on his paymaster, Sam Antar).
Sam Antar is upset because Sam has long defended Barry Minkow. In fact, they are close associates, and have much in common:
- At the age of 23, Barry Minkow was convicted on 57 counts of fraud (Minkow Is Convicted on All Charges : Jury Decides That ZZZZ Best Founder Masterminded Fraud) then sentenced to prison for 25 – 30 years for financial crimes (he served 7).
- Sam Antar was CFO of one of the greatest financial scams of the 1980’s, also committed financial crimes for which he also became a convicted felon (though he ratted on his cousin, Crazy Eddie, to get by with house arrest and skip prison). As Fortune Magazine described the scam: “When the company, which went public in 1984, blew up in a financial scandal in 1987, Sam Antar, an accountant, was its CFO. The debacle cost investors roughly $145 million and involved just about every kind of accounting fraud then known to man, including receipt skimming, money laundering, and the counting of bogus inventory.” Of Sam himself, Fortune wrote, “Sam E. Antar is a convicted felon, and he will not let anyone forget it for a minute. Whenever you find yourself starting to think of him as merely a fast-talking yet charming New York character, he’ll come out with something like: ‘I had no remorse whatsoever as a criminal. I had no concern about any other human being. I enjoyed being a criminal.'” To understand Sam better, I recommend that you re-read the preceding sentence, substituting the word “sociopath” for the words “felon” and criminal”. It will make much more sense.
- In the last five years these two remarkable swindlers successfully repositioned themselves as (I-shit-thee-not) “fraud investigators”, and a gullible financial media not only allowed this to happen by blindly parroting their claims with no scrutiny, they actually (again, I-shit-thee-not) championed the reemergence of Barry Minkow and Sam Antar. In fact, since 2006 the US media have portrayed Barry and Sam as intellectual luminaries and legitimate sources. In 2006 60 Minutes, normally a show with higher journalistic standards than the financial press, devoted a full 14 minute segment to Barry Minkow titled “It Takes One to Know One”. A year later Fortune Magazine displayed their originality of thought and style by doing an identical lotion job on Barry’s colleague Sam Antar, with the title, “Takes One to Know One” (demonstrating literally how a Party Line gets “parroted” by journalists). Here is Sam Antar yucking it up on CNBC with journalistic worthy Herb Greenberg, sharing his deep thoughts with Larry Kudlow, and being given a rub-down in Portfolio Magazine. (Note Portfolio’s URL: “SEC hounding whistle-blowers such as Antar and Einhorn“. That would be David Einhorn, another hedge fund manager whose name turns up in DeepCapture investigations of this riff-raff: How odd). In addition, note that the author of the Portfolio piece is Gary Weiss, about whom one of the most respected journalists in America once warned me, ““I’ve known Weiss for years. Be careful. He’s a psychopath.” (One can read about Gary here: “Gary Weiss, Psychopath and Scaramouch“).
- As convicted felons who played roles in massive financial swindles that became the stuff of legend, Barry Minkow and Sam Antar may have been perplexed at the ease of their return to society as noted economists. But if they were they did not show it, and instead, slid comfortably into new roles that let them return to committing financial crimes, this time with the imprimatur of the mainstream press.
- in 2007 Barry gave sworn testimony (see depositions part 1 and part 2) that Sam Antar had recently sent him a $150,000 wire, then another $100,000 wire, in order to provide vaguely defined services related to the stock market. Given that Sam is a bankrupt and claims to be penniless, that might strike some as odd. I don’t recall penniless people of my acquaintance sending $250,000 wires. When one allegedly penniless convicted swindler wires another convicted fraudster $250,000 for services that neither can explain, I get suspicious. Call me madcap.
- In December, 2010 Barry Minkow was sanctioned by a judge in a civil case involving stock manipulation. Because the LA Weekly is not a New York-based financial publication it was able to report the information fairly, without the glossy spin characteristic of the normally-fawning Wall Street media.
- December, 2010 – LA Weekly wrote: “Barry Minkow Destroyed Evidence And Lied To Court In Extortion of Lennar Corp., Judge Rules“.
- January, 2011 – LA Weekly wrote: “Barry Minkow’s New Scandal: A judge slams the purportedly redeemed con man with huge sanctions. A Miami judge has ruled that former Los Angeles con man Barry Minkow lied, concealed material witnesses and destroyed or discarded key evidence in the libel and extortion lawsuit filed against him by home-building giant Lennar Corp.“
- Today, Barry Minkow pleads guilty in yet another criminal financial case, and according to his lawyer, is hoping to go away for only 5 more years.
If only there were a pattern, if only there were a pattern….
Incidentally, the Third Musketeer with Barry Minkow and Sam Antar is Gary Weiss, about whom one can read here and, more generally, here.
Oh, and lastly, I suppose journalistic ethics require that I disclose that some time ago DeepCapture’s investigations turned up much information and evidence that, as concerned citizens, we turned over to Lennar Corp, which Lennar put to great effect in developing their civil suit, which ultimately resulted both in the Miami judge sanctioning Barry Minkow and (today) in Barry Minkow’s guilty pleading in a criminal case. I thought it only fair that DeepCapture’s intimate involvement in exposing Barry Minkow be known by the reader, and by Barry himself. He can stew on that for the next 5 years.
Time for these sociopaths to do some caballing in jail.
Are you such a great example if you are trying to manipulate rankings in Google with Overstock? You are not that great of an example in my opinion either, just as shady as all the people you write about.
Jake is such a wuss.
Nonsense. We are the white hat guys. So we openly followed what has been a standard (and previously unremarkable) SEO technique of giving discounts links to university professors and students? Wow, that’s really “shady”. Comparing that to the financial crimes of these felons gives good insight into where you are coming from.
Amen to that, Patrick. I’m a huge supporter who would be glad to help in any way. Thanks for all your investigative work. The new articles regarding these fake “fraudbusters” is undermining the paid message board bashers’ contention that their vocation doesn’t even exist.
I don’t know if you are familiar with Janice Shell, but she is one revered by many paid bashers and described in the mainstream media as a “cyber-vigilante”, as if that is a good thing. She voluntarily came to Tony Elgindy’s defense and gave testimony trying to get his sentence mitigated. It’s there in the court documents. I knew something was wrong when all these “volunteer” fraudbusters refused to see the inconsistency of her actions versus her guise.
Take care and a world of thanks from one closely following DeepCapture.
As a small business owner and an SEO (forced to be one by Google) I didn’t see anything wrong with Overstock’s method. They didn’t buy any links nor is it black hat. I thought it was brilliant! The arrogant Google responded because they realize they got beaten and they didn’t like it. Put it this way – Amazon didn’t become part of Google’s ‘pre-defined’ first page result for everything because they are ‘big’ and authoritative. Amazon is Google’s #1 adword customer – they pay to be in the top five for always appearing in the organic search! Google will say it is their search algorithm that put Amazon in the result. It is complete BS! Ebay use to be always in the top 5 in the organic search when they were Google’s #1 client! After Ebay snuffed Google by ending the marketing pact it mysteriously disappeared on their organic search!
Jake, really. Thats it. Thats all the retort u and ur cronies with all that money and all that ink has? That OSTK gooses Googles ratings over the criminal cabal stealing hardworking americans retirement savings? PPPUUULLLLEEEEAAASSSEEE!!! Don’t waste anymore bandwith. Was the blog false? No then just relax and get ready to go to jail like the rest of ur buddies, because its coming.Trust me. Thanks Patrick.
Well done Patrick,well done!
Know the enemy Dept:
Erin Go Brah Patrick. What a great present to have on this great day. I hope their shower partners are called “BUBBA”. I wouldn’t be a bit suprised if Gary isn’t providing the feds with info to keep his sorry ass out of jail.
Best to you Patrick
PS I bet Mary might be smiling from above.
Do the FBI have any teeth or are they GUMMING IT like the SEC ?
Gumming, while humming ‘Yankee Doodle Dandy”.
Minkow, Milken….. Nice sentences, but they don’t serve long enough. They get out, and do it again.
The new crew needs to serve the full term. The damage they inflicted is as bad as any violent crime. How many of you know of people who’s lives are destroyed as the Uber Rich on 6th ave live in luxury?
You don’t have to shoot a man to kill him. I see it every day.
Happy St. Patrick’s Day! Nice to see law enforcement happens on occasion regarding some of the penny ante guys. Now to work on up the food chain towards the bigger fish. Can’t wait for the report Mark Mitchell is preparing. Thanks again.
His blood must be bubbling red and on Saint Paddy’s day, yet.
“I thought it only fair that DeepCapture’s intimate involvement in exposing Barry Minkow be known by the reader, and by Minkow himself. He can stew on that for the next 5 years.”
You gotta like it…
Nice to see justice starting to catch up with the fraudsters. Even nicer to see that Deepcapture was instrumental in it.
There are very few people battling this financial mob in NY. But to great effect.
My applause to all involved at Deepcapture.
Jake’s a snake.
Why is there no mention here of the other companies this crook has damaged, like Medifast?
This type of behavior (fraud) seems to be wide spread, where is enforcement.
what does this look like? http://files.shareholder.com/downloads/MED/1200808310x0x351363/E98FFFE8-2C8A-46A5-8C99-1E0F2998B8FD/Medifast__Inc._and_Bradley_T._MacDonald_complaint_-_case__10cv0382jlswmc.pdf
This is vile. Minkow should be incinerated.
Because the Medifast suit against Minkow was thrown out.
great , 20 responses are here. they are all in different views and opinion.
I dont think so…