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Brokerage chairman puts in plea over state racketeering charges



Brokerage chairman puts in plea over state racketeering charges | Insurance Business America















Known Democrats backer accused of threatening property owners

Brokerage chairman puts in plea over state racketeering charges


Insurance News

By
Terry Gangcuangco

On Tuesday, George E. Norcross III – executive chairman of insurance and benefits brokerage Conner Strong & Buckelew – entered a not guilty plea in New Jersey in response to racketeering charges.

Attorney General Matt Platkin alleges Norcross threatened property owners to take over their assets and tailored tax incentive laws for the benefit of organizations under his control. Four of Norcross’ co-defendants also pleaded not guilty in Mercer County’s state Superior Court, while another co-defendant has yet to enter a plea.   

An Associated Press report cited Norcross’ attorney, Michael Critchley, as telling Judge Peter Warshaw: “My client emphatically states that he is not guilty.”

The former Democratic National Committee member is accused of operating a criminal enterprise from 2012, involving threats to property owners, using Camden city government for land acquisitions, and crafting tax incentives favorable to his companies.

While Norcross has been under investigation for years, he has consistently denied wrongdoing. He has also labeled the prosecution as politically driven and baseless, expressing his anger when the charges were first announced.

Other defendants pleading not guilty were Norcross’ brother Philip, William M. Tambussi, ex-Camden Mayor Dana L. Redd, and John J. O’Donnell. Sidney R. Brown was absent from court as his attorney is involved in the Menendez trial in New York.

Back in June when the six were charged, Platkin declared: “When we say no-one is above the law, we mean it and we will continue to hold accountable anyone who puts their interest above the public interest, no matter how powerful they may be.”

Norcross, currently residing in Palm Beach, Florida, was a Democratic National Committee member until 2021. He previously served as the head of the Camden County Democratic Party and was known as a financial backer to Democrats.

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