Monmouth Democrats Are Off And Running

Monmouth GOP has its pants on the ground

Larry Luttrell and Joe Grillo. Photo via facebook

Larry Luttrell and Joe Grillo. Photo via facebook

Their nominating convention is not until March 22 at the IBEW Local 400 union hall in Wall Township, but Monmouth County Democratic freeholder candidates Larry Luttrell and Joe Grillo are off and running full speed ahead.

Luttrell, the Holmdel attorney who came in last against Freeholders Tom Arnone and Serena DiMaso, as well as his running mate Brian Froelich, after being endorsed by the Asbury Park Press last year, announced he was running again almost immediately after his sad showing.

Grillo is the former Executive Director of the Monmouth Democrats and the municipal chairman of the Asbury Park Democrats. Like Luttrell, he has never held elected office. Grillo was briefly a candidate for the Asbury Park City Council last year, withdrawing from the race prior to the filing deadline. Since leaving his position as ED of the Monmouth Dems, Grillo has worked for his family’s tile company in Howell.

Grillo stepped up his game over the weekend with a fundraising email blast that announced his candidacy.  He raised $6,200 online through Sunday. A Democrat who does not want to be known for talking to a Republican leaning site told MMM that Grillo has raised over $20,000 for his campaign including checks collected offline. His stated goal is to raise $50,000 by the June 3rd primary.

Read the rest of this entry »

Posted: March 10th, 2014 | Author: | Filed under: 2014 Elections, Monmouth County, Monmouth Democrats, Monmouth GOP | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments »

A-Rod’s transgressions don’t make The Yankees dirty

Andrew Lucas, center, then the Republican mayor of Manalapan, with then Freeholder John D'Amico and Amy Mallet, both Democrats, in September of 2010, seven months after Lucas purchased Burke Farm.

Andrew Lucas, center, then the Republican mayor of Manalapan, with then Freeholder John D’Amico and Amy Mallet, both Democrats, in September of 2010, seven months after Lucas purchased Burke Farm.

Former future Hall of Famer Alex Rodriguez dropped his lawsuits against MLB last week and accepted his 162 game suspension for doping with performance enhancing drugs.

The suspension will cost A-Rod $25 million and very likely his induction to the Hall of Fame in Cooperstown.

No one from the Red Sox Nation, not even a fan, has called for the Yankees to be banned from playoff contention in 2014 due to A-Rod’s transgressions. No sports writer has suggested Derek Jeter is dirty because A-Rod cheated or called for asterisks to be placed next to Mariano Rivera’s records.

Rightly so.

Too often in politics when a member of one team is accused or convicted or wrongdoing, the rivals attempt to paint the entire team as dirty.  Too often journalists hungry for content cooperate with the slander.

Thus is the case in Monmouth County were former Manalapan Mayor Andrew Lucas, a Republican, was indicted last week on charges of wire fraud, identity theft, bank fraud and providing false statements to the IRS and FBI.   A private equity manager, Lucas is accused of deploying a complex and fraudulent scheme to come up with the funds to purchase a farm in Manalapan which he then immediately tried to sell the development rights on to New Jersey’s Farmland Preservation Program.  The Farmland Preservation Program is funded by the state, county and municipal governments.

Read the rest of this entry »

Posted: February 11th, 2014 | Author: | Filed under: Andrew Lucas, Media, Monmouth County, Monmouth Democrats, Monmouth GOP | Tags: , , , , | 6 Comments »

Lucas Posts Two Properties To Cover His Bail

Andrew Lucas, center, then the Republican mayor of Manalapan, with then Freeholder John D'Amico and Amy Mallet, both Democrats, in September of 2010, seven months after Lucas purchased Burke Farm.

Andrew Lucas, center, then the Republican mayor of Manalapan, with then Freeholder John D’Amico and Amy Mallet, both Democrats, in September of 2010, seven months after Lucas purchased Burke Farm.

Former Manalapan Mayor Andrew Lucas put up liens on two properties this afternoon to cover the $500,000 bond which was a condition of his release from federal custody. Lucas was arrested Friday on 11 federal charges last week, including wire fraud, identity theft and providing false information to the IRS and FBI.  U.S. Magistrate Judge Douglas Arpert gave Lucas the weekend to come up with $500,000 in assets to secure is release.

The properties are Lucas’s home at 24 Iron Ore Road, Manalapan and 351 Asbury Road in Howell.  The Howell property is own by Timothy Murphy, according to APP.com’s Data Universe.

In addition to the $500,000 bail, Lucas is subject to home confinement and electronic monitoring. He surrendered his weapons and firearms ID card.  He is prohibited from leaving the state of New Jersey.

A copy of the federal order setting the conditions of Lucas’s release can be viewed here.

Posted: February 10th, 2014 | Author: | Filed under: Andrew Lucas, Manalapan | Tags: , , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

Gopal Makes False Allegations Over Lucas Arrest

Monmouth County Democratic Chairman Vin Gopal

Monmouth County Democratic Chairman Vin Gopal

Just as he did last October when he falsely accused a Republican candidate for Red Bank Council of being a fugitive, Monmouth County Democratic Chairman Vin Gopal is lying today in his attempt to make political hay over the arrest of former Manalapan Mayor Andew Lucas.

Lucas was indicted for alleged actions in connection with his purchase of Burke Farm.

The ever deceptive young chairman issued a statement to PoltickerNJ and other outlets that alleges a scandal regarding the sale of the development rights to the farm to the state/county and municipally funded Open Space program.  Gopal say blatantly accuses the Republican members of the Monmouth County Board of Freeholders of being involved in the scandal.  The U.S. Attorney thoroughly investigated the sale of the farm, with the cooperation of Monmouth County officials. No charges  have been filed regarding the sale of the development rights.  No one other than Lucas has been charged with any wrong doing.

Gopal said:

Read the rest of this entry »

Posted: February 7th, 2014 | Author: | Filed under: Andrew Lucas, Manalapan, Monmouth County, Monmouth County Board of Freeholders, Monmouth Democrats, Monmouth GOP | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , | 31 Comments »

Lucas released till Monday

andrew lucasFormer Manalapan Mayor Andrew Lucas appeared before U.S. Magistrate Judge Douglas Arpert in Trenton this afternoon in his initial appearance concerning the 11 count indictment for which he was arrested this morning.

Arpert released Lucas and gave him until Monday to post a $500,000 secured bond.  His bail conditions include electronic monitoring, turning over any weapons and his travel is restricted to New Jersey, according to U. S. Attorney’s spokesperson Matthew Reilly.

No plea was entered, which Reilly said is standard for an intial appearance in federal court.

Read the charges against Lucas here.

Posted: February 7th, 2014 | Author: | Filed under: Andrew Lucas | Tags: , , , , , , , | 3 Comments »

Andrew Lucas Arrested

andrew lucasFormer Manalapan Mayor Andrew Lucas was arrested this morning by federal authorities, according to a statement by the U.S. Attorney’s Office.

Lucas has been indicted on 11 counts including wire fraud, loan application fraud, illegal monetary transaction, false statements to the IRS,  aggravated identity theft, obstruction of a grand jury investigation and falsification of records in a federal investigation.

The charges are for alleged actions in connection with Lucas’s purchase of Burke Farm. No charges were made in connection of the sale of the development rights to the farm to the government’s Open Space Program, according to a source familiar with the investigation.

Lucas is being represented by Mario F. Gallucci of Helbock, Nappa and Gulluci, a Staten Island, NY law firm.

The U. S. Attorney’s statement says:

Read the rest of this entry »

Posted: February 7th, 2014 | Author: | Filed under: Andrew Lucas, Manalapan | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | 26 Comments »

Judge Lawson: Freeholder Lillian Burry had no conflict of interest regarding Lucas farm vote

Judge Lawrence M. Lawson

Judge Lawrence M. Lawson

Monmouth County Assignment Judge Lawrence M. Lawson has ruled that “no rational fact-finder could find a conflict of interest” in Freeholder Lillian Burry’s March 2013 vote to fund the purchase of the development rights to former Manalapan Mayor Andrew Lucas’s Burke Farm.

In an opinion dated January 8, Lawson said that Burry did not have a conflict of interest, “real or apparent,” “potential” or “actual” in the controversial farmland preservation purchase that has been a political football in Monmouth County and Manalapan since 2010.

In a Summary Judgment, Lawson dismissed the suit with prejudice, brought by Holmdel attorney Lawrence Luttrell, a Democratic freeholder candidate at the time that he, his wife and mother-in-law formed R.A.G.E (Residents Against Government Exploitation), a non-profit corporation, for the sole purpose of bringing suit against Monmouth County over Burry’s vote on the Lucas farm deal.

Read the rest of this entry »

Posted: January 23rd, 2014 | Author: | Filed under: Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 8 Comments »