Norman Hsu Skips Bail Hearing Today! New Warrant Issued!
NORMAN HSU SKIPS BAIL HEARING!
Hsu forfeits $2 million!
Norman Hsu, center, leaves a San Mateo County jail with Jason Booth, left, and attorney Somnath Raj Chatterjee, right, in Redwood City, Calif., Friday, Aug. 31, 2007. Hsu, a top Democratic fundraiser wanted as a fugitive in California, turned himself in Friday to face a grand theft charge. After reports surfaced this week of Hsu’s fugitive status in California, Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton, (D-NY) joined other candidates in returning thousands of dollars Hsu raised. (AP Photo/Paul Sakuma)
Democratic fundraiser Norman Hsu (SHOO) has failed to appear for a bail hearing in Redwood City.
Hsu forfeits the $2 million bail he posted last week. A judge has issued a new warrant for his arrest.
Hsu’s lawyer says he doesn’t know where he is.
Hsu has been a fugitive in California for 15 years during which time he became a top donor to Democratic candidates, including presidential contenders Hillary Rodham Clinton and Barack Obama.
Hsu pleaded no contest in 1991 to a felony count of grand theft, admitting he’d defrauded investors of $1 million in a bogus investment scam.
Prosecutors say he was facing up to three years in prison when he skipped town before being sentenced.
Do you suppose the Chinese gang members have kidnapped him again?
(Do the Clintons belong to a Chinese gang?)
Dan Riehl thinks he may be heading back to Hong Kong.
The NYT says he was supposed to turn in his passport on Monday:
On Monday, Mr. Hsu was required to turn his passport over to the court, but he told court officials that he had not been able to find it then. Mr. Brosnahan said they were hoping Mr. Hsu would bring it to court with him today.
Today’s Examiner editorial wonders how on earth a guy flees the country after pleading no contest to felony grand theft charges for running a $1 million Ponzi scheme in California, then shows up 15 years later in New York as one of the brightest fund raising stars of the Democratic Party.
There aren’t a lot of people who can afford to put up the cash for a $2 million bail, but clearly there aren’t a lot of people like Hsu.
He was facing three years in jail before vanishing after his grand theft plea in what prosecutors said was a Ponzi scheme to hoodwink investors. Indeed, the attorney who handled the original case said Hsu essentially stole $1 million — which must seem like peanuts to all the people he’s managed to convince in the ensuing years to give generously to their (and his) favorite candidates.
Prosecutors have said they believed Hsu fled to Hong Kong after entering his grand theft plea, which involved a business in which he raised money from investors to import latex gloves from Asia. He was listed as a managing director of a Hong Kong-based exporter, but just about everything involving him in the last decade remains a mystery.
He has told people who knew him in New York that he was working in the fashion industry, but many key groups involved in the apparel business say they’ve never heard of him. Still, it hasn’t stopped many prominent supporters from going to bat for him. Bob Kerrey, the former Nebraska senator now serving as the head of New School University in New York, insisted that Hsu is a clothing designer, which may explain why he placed him on the university’s board of trustees. But Hsu resigned that post last week after the fundraising allegations surfaced.
For a guy who was apparently running from the law, Hsu may be a record-holder as the nation’s highest-profile fugitive. He’s raised money for candidates on both coasts, including San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom, and contributed to District Attorney Kamala Harris’ campaign; he’s also been very active in New York State politics, giving more than $50,000 to the state Democratic Party.
It’s too early to tell what kind of impact his role will have on national Democratic politics, but clearly the ripples are widening. Several of the candidates who enjoyed Hsu’s financial support are now backing away from him, saying they will give his contributions to charity. Yet there’s little doubt that investigators are anxious to dig deep into Hsu’s fundraising operation, especially in light of his shady past.
Michelle Malkin is following the democratic fugitive story.
Clarice Feldman has more on Hsu today at the American Thinker.
Surprise!… Lawsuit Ties Clintons to Shady Marketing Firm
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WANTED: Another Hillary Donor- This One Is Sought By FBI!!
More Bum News For Hillary… Hsu Named in 1996 Communist China Donations Scandal
Democrats Hit By Hsu-nami… Hillary Donor Case Goes to Court!
Hsu-nami News: Norman Hsu Linked to China Missile Trader
Woops! Another Illegal Donor For Hillary Clinton- From Japan
MORE: SFGate– His attorney team talked with Hsu this morning:
Brosnahan said someone from his team had been in contact with Hsu a few hours before the 9 a.m. hearing, but he declined to comment on whether that contact was by phone or other means.
Midwest Engineer writes in to say this on Hsu- “Shark bait.”
FOX News has video from the court house this morning.
Update 2: The American Spectator has more on the mysterious Norman Hsu:
In campaign finance reports, Hsu’s companies are listed as: Next Components Ltd., Cool Planets Ltd., Because Men’s Clothes, and Dilini Management. But none of the companies have online footprints or appear in fashion industry directories that I have searched. The only official recognition of any of these companies that I have found is Next Components, in the form of a filing for a certificate of corporation with the New York Department of State, Division of Corporations — but even that doesn’t hold up to closer scrutiny. The filing was from May 6, 2005, and when I called the Division of Corporations, a representative there told me that the filing needed to be renewed every two years for a fee of $9, but Next Components never responded to the renewal notice.
The filing lists 561 Seventh Ave., Suite 1301 as the address for Next Components, but I called Handro Properties, the management company that runs the building, and was told that not only have they never heard of Next Components, but “Suite 1301” doesn’t even exist.
As I reported yesterday, it turns out that an address Hsu listed in his campaign finance filings—455 Fifth Ave.—is the site of the Mid-Manhattan Library. I had a friend of mine who is a real estate broker in New York look into yet another address he listed—160 Wooster St., Apt 3C. That apartment does exist and it’s a luxury 2 bedroom that sold for $1.85 million in June of 2004. However, it was sold again for an undisclosed price on November 15, 2005, and FEC records show that Hsu made political donations from that address both before and after that date. So unless he sold the apartment to himself, it’s another unusual piece to the rather bizarre puzzle that is Norman Hsu.