flashback: top nj god/govt leaders arrested in black market scandal
from nytimes: A veteran New Jersey political consultant who was among dozens arrested in a huge corruption sweep last week was found dead in his Jersey City apartment on Tuesday, the same day that one of three mayors charged in the case resigned. The circumstances surrounding the death of the consultant, Jack M. Shaw, are “suspicious,” said Edward J. DeFazio, the Hudson County prosecutor. He said it did not appear to be a homicide. “It could be natural, it could be accidental, it could be suicide,” he said, refusing to elaborate. An autopsy is set for Wednesday. His death, reported by a companion to the authorities at 5:17 p.m., came hours after Dennis Elwell, the mayor of Secaucus, stepped down, becoming the first elected official to quit after being charged in the sprawling political corruption case.
related: kidney brokers flourish when compensation is illegal
from wsj: Even by New Jersey standards, Thursday’s roundup of three mayors, five rabbis and 36 others on charges of money laundering and public corruption was big. But what put this FBI dragnet head and shoulders above the rest are the charges of trafficking in human body parts. According to a federal criminal complaint filed in district court in New Jersey, Levy Izhak Rosenbaum of Brooklyn conspired to broker the sale of a human kidney for a transplant. The cost was $160,000 to the recipient of the transplant, of which the donor got $10,000. According to the complaint, Mr. Rosenbaum said he had brokered such sales many times over the past 10 years. “That it could happen in this country is so shocking,” said Dr. Bernadine Healy, former head of the Red Cross. No, it isn’t. When I needed a kidney several years ago and had no donor in sight, I would have considered doing business with someone like Mr. Rosenbaum. The current law — the National Organ Transplant Act of 1984 — gave me little choice. I would be a felon if I compensated a donor who was willing to spare me years of life-draining dialysis and premature death.
(note: the author of the preceding article is dr sally satel, a resident scholar at the american enterprise institute & the editor of “when altruism isn’t enough: the case for compensating kidney donors”. satel got a kidney from a friend in '06.)