Miami-Dade County State Attorney Katherine Fernandez-Rundle’s brand spanking new public corruption task force is gonna kick some serious ass.
In order to come to that conclusion, though, one has to suspend disbelief after reading a Miami Herald article published yesterday, New Miami-Dade task force to target state public corruption.
One’s imagination (and the self-control needed to suppress uncontrollable laughter) would have to work overtime in order to take seriously a story about fighting public corruption that mentions Katherine Fernandez-Rundle, Carlos Gimenez, Joe Centorino and Jimmy Morales in the same article.
Because all four of them have spent their entire careers fighting fraud and protecting the public from corrupt politicians.
Yeah, I thought that was hysterical, too.
Even funnier is that Rundle is now getting serious about public corruption by forming a task force “nearly one year after” she destroyed “what was once the largest police anti-corruption unit in the county, run by Miami-Dade police,” under the guise of a “money saving reorganization.”
Ironically, money is no longer an issue now that she has been safely re-elected, and long after she booted Detective Luis “McDreamy” Rodriguez and “at least sixteen of the investigators from the public corruption unit,” as reported last July by Political Cortadito.
Singing a completely different tune a year later, Katherine Fernandez-Rundle told Herald reporter David Ovalle, “We had to really regroup, restructure ourselves, rebuild ourselves. We went to the various involved municipalities and said, ‘You need to help us. We need the manpower, the staff, the ability to go out and conduct these proactive investigations.’”
If Rundle’s sudden desire to “regroup” doesn’t give one pause, think about the fact that her new task force “will be based exclusively at the state attorney’s office,” where I imagine it will be even easier for Rundle to control which public officials are investigated and which ones are protected. The Herald article also reported that “much of their work is secret.”
I bet it is!
With all the corruption prevalent in northeast Miami-Dade County that the state attorney’s office all but ignored until this year, one can’t help but wonder why former North Miami Mayor Lucie Tondreau’s office was targeted for a raid in search of absentee-ballot fraud, when her predecessor, Andre Pierre, got away with everything but murder for the four years that he occupied the mayoral office.
The new task force is “intended to cast a wider net on crimes against taxpayers across the county,” such as the current case against “ex-Miami Beach procurement director Gus Lopez,” who is standing trial for “accepting cash in an alleged scheme to peddle sensitive information to companies bidding for city contracts.”
Team Irony would like to point out that Miami Beach City Manager Jimmy Morales is also quoted in the Herald as saying, “We need to battle public corruption. We’ve had a history of it in recent years and Miami Beach needs to be a part of the efforts to keep government clean and honest.” All the while overlooking the fact that “in recent years,” he was given a pass by the Miami-Dade Commission on Ethics and Public Trust – a Commission he created – for failing to provide documentation for expenditures of five hundred eighty thousand and eight-one dollars and twenty-seven ($580,081.27) cents,” during his own run for County Mayor in 2004.
But, hey! Now’s as good a time as any to go after public corruption. Right, Jimmy? Especially since you’ve trained your own police department to keep the media in the dark about crime in Miami Beach, let’s just keep the focus on corruption in the County – anywhere else but your city.
Miami-Dade County certainly presents a multitude of opportunities that practically invites public officials to engage in criminal activity. Apparently, some of those opportunities are just so lucrative, they’re almost be too hard to resist. The state attorney’s new squad of hand-picked Corruption Hunters have their work cut out for them – as long as they remember who’s in charge.
Because, as the Miami Herald article explains, Katherine Fernandez Rundle is getting tough on crime in Miami-Dade County.
And this time, she means it!
With the new task force in place, Kathy now has the absolute power to keep her friends close and her enemies prosecuted.
“Spreading the Wealth”