The Florida Bar

Bad Law Makes Bad Ethics

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Classification:Billable Hours
Date Published:06/20/1994
Title:Bad Law Makes Bad Ethics
Source:Legal Times/Monroe Freedman

A controvercial case involving attorney Armand D'Amato, brother of Alfonse D'Amato, (D-NY), is now pending in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 2nd Circuit. Unisys Corp. vice president was in charge of marketing radar missile -control systems to the Navy. In the 1980s Gardner used over $40 million of Usisys' money for bribes, illegal campaign comtributions and other crooked deals to stimulate sales. One of the people who Gardner wanted to influence was Al D'Amato, who sat on the senate Appropriations Committee. Toward that end, from 1986 to 1988, Gardner paid $120,000 to brother Amand, ostensibly for such make-work as "providing reports".
The Armand-Al connection was deliberately kept obscure by misleading billings. Checks were made out to Armand's partner. Armand was convicted on 6 counts related to billing. Armand and Gardner devised the misleading billing to conceal the true nature of Armand's services to Unisys.
As Judge Mishler ruled, there was "ample evidence to prove[Armand's] specific intent to obtain fees from Unisys for work that he did not perform.
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[Revised: 06-30-2004]