DOCUMENTS FROM YORK COUNTY SUPERIOR COURT SHEDS LIGHT ON THE STRACUZZI ‘PROSTITUTION OF A MINOR’ CASE … MANY QUESTIONS STILL LOOM FOR GREYLOCK FEDERAL CREDIT UNION, ESPECIALLY REGARDING ANGELO’s ‘GOLDEN PARACHUTE’
By DAN VALENTI
PLANET VALENTI News and Commentary
(FORTRESS OF SOLITUDE, TUESDAY, APRIL 10, 2012) — As we wrote last week, the Angelo Stracuzzi case from Biddeford, Maine is still relevant on many fronts, including its legal implications for Greylock Federal Credit Union, where Stracuzzi (“Tell ’em Angelo Sent You”) ruled for so many years.
Many have asked for more details on the case. As both refresher and revelation, we present a look at the court documents that were made available. THE PLANET obtained the records from York Superior Court in Alfred, Maine. The documents in “STATE OF MAINE, ss v. ANGELO STRACUZZI DOB 5/07/49” are stamped “Oct. 25, 2004.”
Six Years of Deceit, Not Five
The date shows that the crimes with which Biddeford, Maine, police charged Stracuzzi occurred in 2004, not 2005. This suggests that Stracuzzi acted as President and CEO of Greylock FCU for six years, not five, while hiding details of his arrest.
We say “hiding” because of the public contentions of Greylock FCU spokesman John Bissell in summer 2010 that the company’s board of directors knew nothing of the Stracuzzi arrests, you know, the Sgt. Schultz Defense. The board included Stracuzzi ally and best bud, Clifford Nilan — the man who then as now heads the probation department in the Pittsfield courthouse. It is hard to imagine any scenario under which Nilan, as probation chief, did not know about Stracuzzi’s arrest and conviction, since the latter’s probation was allowed to be switched from Your County, Maine, to home turf in Pittsfield.
Subsequent determinations show that there’s no evidence Stracuzzi ever served his court-ordered sentence of probation. By this reasoning, it would seem Bissell’s claim that no board members knew about Stracuzzi to be innacurate. Nilan had to know.
If the rest of the board didn’t know, the evidence suggests that for six years, both Stracuzzi and Nilan kept the arrests hidden from Greylock’s officers, and through them, the company’s owner-members. We also wonder: In those six years, how many times did Stracuzzi sign a document swearing to the board he did not have a criminal past. THE PLANET is told such affidavits are part of the extensive review under which boards put presidents of financial institutions. Does Greylock have such documents?
This becomes relevant given rumors about a million-dollar plus settlement Stracuzzi may have received to depart from the company quietly. Owner-members were certainly harmed by any such payout.
‘Patronizing the Prostitution of a Minor’
The court documents lists the “Date of Violation(s)” as July 26, 2004. Biddeford authorities charged Stracuzzi with “Patronizing Prostitution of a Minor, Class D; Assault, Class D; and Criminal Mischief, Class D.”
The police’s prostitution charge demolishes Stracuzzi’s story, given at the time news of his arrests finally broke in summer 2010. Stracuzzi claimed the incident stemmed from a misunderstanding. He claimed in print to Conor Berry, as we recall, that he stopped in an act of kindness to give a charitable ride to a young, teenage, hitchhiking boy.
Prosecutors, acting on evidence presented by the Biddeford police, allege Stracuzzi “gave pecuniary benefit to [NAME REDACTED], a minor, in exchange for the prostitution of [NAME REDACTED]. a minor.” Translated, this alleges that Stracuzzi gave money to a pimp so he could have sexual relations with another person. Both pimp and prostitute were minor males. Subsequent revelation suggest the boys were aged 15 and 13. According to police, who do not bring such charges lightly, this then-54-year-old married man went cruising for sex with a boy — loathsome behaviors for a “Community Pillar.”
‘Intentionally … Causing Bodily Injury’
The police also filed assault charges against Stracuzzi for “intentionally, knowingly or recklessly [causing] bodily injury or offensive physical contact to [NAME REDACTED].” They charges that “having no reasonable ground to believe he had a right to do so, [Stracuzzi] did intentionally, knowingly, or recklessly damage or destroy a gold chain necklace and/or shirt, property of [NAME REDACTED].”
Documents reveal that police arraigned Stracuzzi on Oct. 27, 2004. In a separate document dated Aug. 2, 2005, the state’s attorney dismissed case CR-04-2288.” The documents says that “Defendant [Stracuzzi] has pled [guilty] to other charges … to CR-05-194.” That was the second case against Stracuzzi.
On May 25, 2005, York Superior Court issued its “Judgment and Commitment” report on Case CR-05-194 — the second case police brought against the Greylock FCU chief. Under “Offense(s) charged,” the document has in typescript: “17-A M.R.S.A. S855 PATRONIZING PROSTITUTION OF A MINOR — CLASS D.” Then, in handwriting, CR-05-194 lists assault and criminal mischief counts from incidents occurring on July 26, 2004.
Again, the 2004 date, adding a full year to the coverup.
In CR-05-194, authorities charged Stracuzzi based on “information” contained in a “complaint.” The only other data in the information field is a record of Stracuzzi’s plea. The form lists three boxes as options: “Guilty, Nolo, [or] Not Guilty.” The “Guilty” box is checked.
The next information field on CR-05-194 is “Offense(s) Convicted.” It lists the assault and criminal mischief charges. Based on Stracuzzi’s plea, the state of Maine convicted the Greylock president of both charges.
From May 25, 2005 until the media exposed his criminal record from the Maine incidents, Stracuzzi’s public life was a fraud. Stracuzzi’s every action from that time until summer 2010 as head of Greylock FCU was tainted with the coverup. As for the growth of the company during that time, we can say two things:
(1) Perhaps the growth would have been even stronger if the company had an honest president.
(2) The growth was, in effect, Judas money — pieces of silver earned while hiding reprehensible activities.
We would also add the question of settlement: How much money, if any, did Stracuzzi received to “resign”? That is a question that should be well in play among the current Greylock board of directors, the public, and especially Greylock member-owners.
Court Gave Stracuzzi Two Jail Terms, Probation
The court documents show Stracuzzi was sentenced to two jail terms. This indicated the seriousness of the matter. These were not simple misunderstandings. These were reckless acts of a grown man committed against a mere boy. Stracuzzi received 364 days in jail for assault and 364 days in jail for criminal mischief. These were to be served concurrently.
The documents suspend jail time and give Stracuzzi a year’s probation. Notably, it leaves blank the spaces for when the probation is to begin and where the probation is to be served. This suggests that Stracuzzi and his lawyers cut a deal to serve his probation not in York County, which would be standard procedure, but in Pittsfield, Mass. — where his buddy and fellow Greylock officer Clifford Nilan headed the probation department.
Did Stracuzzi inform Maine criminal justice officials and his own lawyers of his relationship, personal and professional, with Nilan? What was Nilan’s role, if any, in getting the location of Stracuzzi’s probation changed? That’s a crucial question with serious ramifications, and it has not yet been answered.
We all know about the probation Stracuzzi was supposed to serve. He didn’t. Stracuzzi told Conor Berry of the Berkshire Eagle that when he reported to probation, a clerk asked him if he wanted to see an officer. Does a convicted criminal have a choice? Is this a question that is commonly asked? Stracuzzi has publicly stated he never saw a probation officer. How could this be?
To further muddle the mess, the Massachusetts Probation Department, itself under investigation in a corruption probe whose results still have to be released, provided conflicting information on Stracuzzi’s probation. First, the state DOP said Nilan supervised Stracuzzi’s supervision. Then it denied that. Which is it? The state has never answered. Perhaps the investigation results will shed some light here.
At least two members of Greylock FCU’s board knew about Stracuzzi’s arrest and guilty pleas: Stracuzzi and Nilan. Did the rest of the board know anything? Yes or no, either way, the board — knowingly or unknowingly — participated in a cover up. This constituted a gross violation of its job to protect the interests of rank-and-file members of the credit union, the one “Sent” by Angelo.
Did Stracuzzi and/or Nilan mention the Biddeford case to any other board member, officer, or employee of Greylock? That, too, remains unanswered.
The Deal of the Century
A Greylock officer, speaking on condition of anonymity, told THE PLANET that every employee of the company must undergo a criminal background check. How, then, could the board have whiffed on Stracuzzi’s criminal past. The source could not account for this, calling the possibility “unbelievable, almost impossible.”
Going on two years since the case broke, the Greylock board has yet to explain how it could miss this. Understandably, Greylock officers — at the time and now — want the Stracuzzi mess to go away. It will not in the eyes of the public, though, until it comes clean about what happened, about what they knew and didn’t know. Particularly, the board needs to spells out in plain English: Did they give Stracuzzi (and Nilan, for that matter) a compensation package in exchange for going quietly in the night? If no, then flatly tell us. If yes, then reveal the specific terms of the agreement. Greylock members and the public at large, given Stracuzzi’s long and highly visible public role as Community Pillar, political leader, and Greylock chief, needs to know.
Pittsfield didn’t deserve to be treated this way by Angelo Stracuzzi. Neither did Greylock Federal Credit Union. The vile nature of the charges against Stracuzzi — sexually messing with young boys — is particularly despicable. We also wonder: Could the nature of these criminal charges only be the tip of the iceberg, one that involves not only Stracuzzi but other “Community Pillars?” Was there, and is there, a sickness that has never been revealed?
A coda to the court documents — Stracuzzi had to pay $150 in restitution to his victim(s) and $20 in court assessments.You can call it The Deal of the Century.
WE HOPE YOU HAVE A GREAT DAY, WITH GLORIOUS SUNSHINE GLOWING AND STREAMS OF WHISKY FLOWING. WE BID YOU WELL.
“OPEN THE WINDOW, AUNT MILLIE.”
LOVE TO ALL.