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Letter: Melius lawyer followed court list

Gary Melius, owner of Oheka Castle, during a

Gary Melius, owner of Oheka Castle, during a fundraising event put on by the Friends of Oheka Castle on June 11, 2014. Photo Credit: Newsday / John Paraskevas

Newsday's voluminous coverage of Gary Melius' role in various foreclosures is notable for the absence of material facts regarding my receivership of an office building in Huntington Station, which would have documented that no misconduct was committed by Justice Emily Pines or me ["Judges act, insiders profit," News, Oct. 5].

The story failed to disclose that I was appointed the receiver solely at the request of the plaintiff-foreclosing bank. Also not revealed was that the property manager and every other appointee was on the eligible list as legally required and pre-approved by the bank, and then appointed by Pines at the request of the parties. Also not mentioned was the fact that every single invoice and payment was also approved by the bank before any payment was made. Finally, at the conclusion of the receivership, the parties agreed to my detailed accounting legally confirming their approval of all payments before Pines approved it.

Rick Bellando was selected property manager from the list of eligible property managers maintained by the New York State Office of Court Administration, as required by court rules, and appointed as property manager, also upon consent of all parties. As it turns out and unknown to me until 18 months after the foreclosure action and receivership was successfully concluded, he was ineligible to be on the list. His ineligibility should have been obvious to the Office of Court Administration, which is responsible for the list. The resume attached to Bellando's Office of Court Administration application prominently disclosed that he was executive director of Nassau's Independence Party and thus ineligible.

The foregoing information was provided to Newsday and the record needs to reflect these facts.

Ronald J. Rosenberg, Garden City

Editor's note: The writer is an attorney for Melius and a former Independence Party committee candidate.
 

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