Siobhán O’Malley set up a successful business in the Big Apple called the South Side Souvenir Stand. Wanting to expand, she chose Boston. Through a contact in the BRA, she was able to lease a piece of city land in the Waterfront District of South Boston. She called her business the Southie Souvenir Stand (SSS). She had to sign a pledge to the BRA to be an equal opportunity employer and to hire her help based on merit.
She hired Sinéad O’Neil as general manager and Nora O’Shea as day time manager. Mae East was a sales person. They all came from Southie. The business thrived year round. In the summer it became particularly hectic requiring the hiring of many more persons. Many students from out-of-state colleges applied. But SSS always gave first priority to the recommendations received from the bigwigs at the BRA or City Hall.
One day a federal prosecutor, Joe Wayne who lived in Wellesley, bought a red and blue Tee shirt that had inscribed on it, “Southie Is My Home Town.” As a joke he wore it to work under his white shirt and new Brooks Bros.suit. He forgot he had a harrowing hearing that day. During it, he sweated quite profusely. When he got back to his office he realized the joke was on him, the dye in the cheap Tee shirt had run ruining his white shirt and new suit.
He complained to Mae, then to Nora, and finally to Sinéad to no avail. He contacted Siobhán O’Malley. She offered to replace the Tee shirt, nothing more. He refused.
Wayne being irate caused an investigation of SSS. He found they advertised on telephone poles for help, asked for a résumé, required applicants to take a simple test, interviewed them and advised them by mail whether they had the job or not. He also found that they mostly hired the people sponsored by City Hall. He took his evidence to the grand jury and indicted Siobhán O’Malley, Sinéad O’Neil, and Nora O’Shea for racketeering. They face 20 years.
The indictment against them is in three counts.
COUNT ONE: RACKETEERING CONSPIRACY
THE ENTERPRISE: Southie Souvenir Shack employs upwards of thirty people, has an New York Affiliate, South Side Souvenir Stands, and engages in activities which affect, interstate and foreign commerce by the use of goods and services in interstate commerce.
THE SSS HIRING SYSTEM: SSS had a merit-based hiring system as agreed with the BRA. Their letter to the BRA said all applicants would meet minimum qualifications and each applicant would be interviewed and hired in a non-discriminatory manner.
THE DEFENDANTS: Siobhán O’Malley, Sinéad O’Neil, and Nora O’Shea were all employed at SSS in executive positions.
THE RACKETEERING CONSPIRACY: The named defendants being employed by SSS did unlawfully conspire to violate Title 18, USC, §1962(c) to conduct the affairs of the enterprise through a pattern of racketeering activity which consisted of multiple acts of mail fraud indictable under Title 18, USC, § 1341.
OBJECTS OF THE CONSPIRACY AND SCHEME TO DEFRAUD: To maintain their positions, to increase the resources of SSS, to aggrandize power to themselves, the defendants sought to curry favor with members of City Hall and the BRA who were in a position to affect their lease by instituting a rigged hiring system that catered to requests from the BRA and City Hall by not hiring the most qualified persons but those who were sponsored while maintaining the façade of a merit-based hiring system.
MANNER AND MEANS OF CONSPIRACY TO DEFRAUD: The defendants kept lists of people City Hall recommended. They created a sham hiring system posting job openings, interviewing people, giving tests, and routinely mailing to unsuccessful candidates rejection letters. Defendant O’Malley certified to the BRA that she was hiring based on merits.
COUNT TWO: RACKETEERING
All that was stated in Count One is realleged and incorporated by reference.
THE SCHEME TO DEFRAUD;
The defendants devised and intended a scheme to defraud and to obtain money and property by means of false pretenses by awarding employment to individuals who were sponsored by member of the BRA and City Hall when these individuals were not the most qualified candidates but were sponsored.
The employment of Gindy Polska Canata: (1) Gindy Polska Canata was recommended by an Irish friend who was a city councilor at City Hall for summer employment. She was not the most qualified candidate. Rejection letters were mailed to unsuccessful candidates.
The employment of Sheila Kristin O’Donovan: (2) Sheila Kristin O’Donovan was recommended by the custodian at City Hall for summer employment. She was not the most qualified candidate. Rejection letters were mailed to unsuccessful candidates.
The employment of Juliessica Leary Leo: (3) Juliessica Leary Leo was recommended by the landscape designer at the BRA for summer employment. She was not the most qualified candidate. Rejection letters were mailed to unsuccessful candidates.
The employment of O’Shea O’Connelly Lydon: (4) O’’Shea O’Connelly Lydon was recommended by the Mayor’s driver for summer employment. She was not the most qualified candidate. Rejection letters were mailed to unsuccessful candidates.
The employment of Suzannne Kathryn Juliana Anthony: (5) Suzannne Kathryn Juliana Anthony was recommended by the Inspector at the BRA for summer employment. She was not the most qualified candidate. Rejection letters were mailed to unsuccessful candidates.
The employment of Thomasina O’Kerry Griffin: (6) Thomasina O’Kerry Griffin was recommended by a BRA auditor on behalf of a priest at St. Columbkille parish in Brighton. She was not the most qualified candidate. Rejection letters were mailed to unsuccessful candidates
RACKETEERING ACTS NUMBERS ONE THROUGH SIX
The defendants devised a scheme to defraud for purposes of keeping their business on city land and to make money by making materially false pretenses and did cause to be placed in post offices letters intended to execute said scheme to defraud in that they did not hire the most qualified candidates and used the mails to deliver rejection letters.
COUNTS THREE THROUGH EIGHT: MAIL FRAUD
We incorporate everything above. The defendants having devised the above scheme did place in mail boxes rejection letters which were used to executing their scheme to defraud.
It all sounds sort of silly, doesn’t it. But it is very serious. When people without criminal records are indicted for racketeering for using the mails because a prosecutor’s shirt was ruined or because the person is out of favor in the media it is the same thing. You’ve read about the latter situation in the Quincy Patriot Ledger in the case against the Massachusetts probation chief from Quincy and his assistants. Their indictment is nothing more than you read above. Check it out. What is outrageous is there is no outrage to this.