The shadowy political committee backing an opponent of Broward Sheriff Scott Israel is using the talents of the man who boasted of making South Florida the “spam capital of the world.” In June, the “Citizens Over Public Safety (COPS)” political committee received a $5,000 in-kind contribution from Media Direct, Inc of Deerfield Beach. According to State election reports the hefty contribution was for an “email blast to million.” One could reasonably assume COPS made an email blast to one million Broward voters.
According to State business records, Scott Hirsch is the president of Media Direct, Inc. Hirsch, a Boca Raton resident, has a controversial record when it comes to email blasts.
In 2003, TIME magazine called Hirsch a “spammer” who sold his email marketing company to Equifax for a reported $135 million dollar price tag. “Florida is home to more spammers than any other state, and Hirsch — likes to take credit for helping make Boca Raton ‘the spam capital of the world.'”
Another reports chronicle how Hirsch’s company went after the former customers of big companies.
In 2006, published reports claimed Hirsch’s Naviant company lead spam campaign on the behalf of Miller Brewing Co, CitiFinancial, Sprint and General Motors. OReilly.com reported the “Miller campaign suggests that Equifax’s spamming, and Naviant itself, are alive and well. Customer-contact.net, the domain referenced in the Miller spam, is associated with former Naviant head and longtime ROKSO spammer Scott Hirsch. The IP address hosting the customer-contact.net domain belongs to Naviant.”
The Mad Finn blog reported Naviant used “e-pending” to spam customers. “E-pending is a term used for a spammer technique of finding your Email address using other information, usually your name and mail address. A spammer, in this case Miller Brewing, has your other information, but not your email address. They’ll trawl online databases for likely matches, and basically append their records of you with the Email address found with the search. E-pending is notoriously inaccurate and guaranteed to generate spam.”
Hirsch is not the first controversial figure associated with the anti-Sheriff Scott Israel committee.
CONSULTANT OWNS COPS DOMAIN
In April, REDBROWARD reported Broward Denocrat consultant Dan Lewis met with the backers of the Citizens Over Public Safety (COPS) political committee. On April 2, REDBROWARD first reported the committee backers hoped to use “COPS” to support the campaign of Democrat James Fondo. Sources told REDBROWARD the backers discussed tactics with Lewis including the use of his controversial “blue card” mailer. The pro-Fondo forces planned to use COPS to attack Israel while Fondo remains “above the fray.”
REDBROWARD uncovered website domain records which showed Dan Lewis, owner of JNAC Communications and Management Services LLC, purchased domains related to the COPS political committee. The domains were registered in late February 2016. The domains include CitizensOverPublicSafety.com and CitizensOverPublicSafety.net.
In December, REDBROWARD reported Lewis’ famously wordy emails touting his judicial candidates ended up in spam folders all across Broward.
A Facebook plea to local tea party activists may have exposed former Broward Sheriff Al Lamberti’s role in the campaign of “mystery man” Edison Jules. On Saturday night, David L. Rosenthal, a Broward-based conspiracy theorist, implored local tea party leaders to support Jules, a Democrat, in the 2016 election for sheriff. Jules is running for the Democrat nomination against Broward Sheriff Scott Israel.
Rosenthal directed his plea towards Danita Kilcullen (Tea Party Fort Lauderdale), Sarah Lima (Broward Tea Party), and “the Republicans of Broward.” He wrote, “I have met Edison Jules four times, and have spoken at length with him three times. He is a candidate for sheriff in opposition to the insane policies of Scott Israel. Edison is a Democrat, but there are no Republicans running, and Al Lamberti supports Edison.” Rosenthal claimed Jules “is the man we need to put things right, not only in the sheriff’s office, but in the schools, and in the county government.” He implored the tea party and Republicans to invite Jules to speak to their groups.
“I urge you to invite him to speak at a Tea Party meeting, and to put him through the fire, if you like,”Rosenthal wrote. “He will stand the test.”
MYSTERY MAN NO MORE?
Last May, REDBROWARD reported Jules filed a racial discrimination lawsuit against his former police department, claiming he was disabled due to “memory loss.” In 2011, Edison Jules filed a lawsuit against the Village of Obetz Police Department. He based his lawsuit on violations of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA).
According to the lawsuit, in May 2009, Jules “lost consciousness while on duty and was taken to the hospital. After a five-day hospital stay, he was released and excused from work for seven days.” The Court noted, “Although Jules was referred to a therapist for his memory, there is no evidence that he ever received memory-related treatment.”
In February 2010, Jules lost his department issued telephone. “Jules reported the loss of the phone to his supervisor and asked that someone from the police department go to his house to inform him if he was needed when off-duty, as Jules would be unreachable by phone.” A few days later, Jules failed to appear in court as a witness. His absence violated Obetz Police Department Directive (“OPDD”) 1.29: Requirement to Attend Trials or Hearings. After two disciplinary hearings, the Mayor of Obetz determined Jules, “demonstrated a lack of trustworthiness and inability to take responsibility for his own conduct, and exhibited an inability to meet the standard expected of a uniformed officer in the Village of Obetz.”
The Court rejected Jules’ claims the Obetz Police Department were aware of his “disability.” The Court wrote, “There is also insufficient evidence to suggest that Defendants believed Plaintiff might have a disability. Plaintiff claims that Chief Hinkle was present when the neurologist diagnosed him with a brain aneurysm, but there is no other evidence in the record that the medical event was ever diagnosed as an aneurysm, or that the aneurysm actually resulted in memory issues. Plaintiff also states that he told his supervisor that he was experiencing memory issues. There is also no evidence that Plaintiff’s supervisor was informed that Plaintiff’s memory lapses were due to impairment. An employer cannot discriminate against an employee on the basis of a disability when it is unaware that the disability exists. Simpkins v. Specialty Envelope, 94 F.3d 645 (6th Cir. 1996) (unpublished).”
Edison Jules has never addressed his lawsuit.
Also last May, REDBROWARD exposed Jules’ dealings with operators of shady Broward County health clinics. In February 2015, Obinson Louis, the business partner of Edison Jules, was arrested on eight felony charges related to medical fraud. On February 18, 2015, Louis (a.k.a Louis Obinson) was charged with two counts of grand theft in the third degree and six counts of operating a medical clinic without a license. Louis surrendered on February 25th and plead “not guilty” to all eight charges.
State of Florida records show Obinson Louis and Edison Jules founded United Health Medical Center Inc. in October 2014. Louis was listed as the president of the Lauderhill medical clinic, while Jules was named the company’s vice president. A month after Louis’ arrest, the State received a document removing Louis and Jules as officers of the clinic. A Broward chiropractor was listed as the new president of the clinic.
Edison Jules has never addressed his partnership with Obinson Louis.
Then REDBROWARD raised questions about whereabouts of Edison Jules. In campaign paperwork filed with the Broward Supervisor of Elections Office (SOE), Edison Jules used a luxury apartment building in Plantation as his address. Jules’ campaign treasurer Katherine Antequera, a New York plus-sized model, also used the same Plantation address. Many assumed Jules, an Ohio policeman, still lived in the Buckeye state. However, REDBROWARD uncovered new information regarding Jules’ residency.
On January 27, 2015, Edison Jules registered to vote in Broward County as a Democrat. Jules listed the Plantation apartment at 1600 SW 78th Avenue as his mailing address. Jules stated he lived at 11701 NW 29th Street in Sunrise. This Sunrise home is for sale “as-is.”
A real estate website claims the home is full of issues: “Possible Roof Damage, Possible Mold Damage, Possible Roof Leaks. Pool is cracked, needs to be filled or redone. Property being sold As-Is.”
When REDBROWARD visited, no one answered the door but dogs were barking.
A neighbor told REDBROWARD that several people have lived there over the last six months. The neighbor said he believes “A Mayor from Jamaica” lives there.
Edison Jules has never addressed questions about his actual address.
In June, REDBROWARD revealed Edison Jules violated Florida campaign laws. Florida election law prohibits candidates from accepting cash contributions over fifty dollars. Section 106.09(1)(a) states, “A person may not make an aggregate cash contribution…to the same candidate or committee in excess of $50 per election.” According to the law, anyone who accepts more than $50 in cash, “commits a misdemeanor of the first degree.” Accepting more than $5000 is a felony.
According to his May campaign financial report filed with the Broward Supervisor of Elections office, Mystery Broward Sheriff candidate Edison Jules gave his own campaign $500 in cash.
Jules would later amend his campaign report.
Edison Jules has never addressed the source of this $500 campaign contribution.
Earlier this month, it appeared as though Edison Jules was finally ready to speak. He sat down for an hour long interview with the Broward/Palm Beach New Times. Was Jules ready for the New Times to hold his feet to the fire?
“During an hour on a Starbucks patio, the candidate wouldn’t say which community leaders have his back, how fundraising is going, or even the circumstances of this wrongful-termination lawsuit with the force he worked for — the Obetz Police Department in Ohio. (Records indicate that Jules worked there between 2007 and 2010. After losing his job with the agency, he filed a lawsuit alleging racial discrimination and a hostile work environment.)”
Instead of answers, Jules spewed generic campaign attacks against Sheriff Israel.
So why is Jules, who claims to be the only “True Democrat” in the race, seeking the support of fringe activists like David Rosenthal and tea party groups? Why did Jules meet with Rosenthal, a virtual unknown in South Florida politics, four times?
Over the last several months, Rosenthal has been leading several attacks against Sheriff Israel. In October, Rosenthal organized a Columbus Day rally at BSO headquarters protesting the employment of Nezar Hamze as a deputy sheriff. Hamze is the executive director of CAIR (Council on American-Islamic Relations). Records obtained by REDBROWARD show Hamze’s employment process began under Sheriff Al Lamberti.
While most of the speakers at the rally decried CAIR’s ties to radical Islamic leaders or questioned the propriety of Hamze holding both postions simultaneously, Rosenthal was quick to call Deputy Hamze a “terrorist.” When REDBROWARD asked for proof that Hamze was a “terrorist,” Rosenthal refused to answer unless his repsonse was recorded on video. (Rosenthal would later attack REDBROWARD for being an Islamist sympathizer).
Since the protest, Rosenthal has pushed for a recall of Sheriff Israel even though it appears a recall of a Florida Constitutional Officer is not legal.
Now, Rosenthal wants Republicans to help get Edison Jules on the Democrat ballot for Sheriff. He wrote, “I am asking you to support him as well, by helping get petition signatures for him, so that he will not have to pay the $10,000 fee for getting on the ballot. He is a Democrat, but as far as I can tell, we would not find a better candidate in any party for the office of sheriff.”
Rosenthal urges tea party activists and Republicans to contact Jules on Facebook or call “Tom Nadler, one of his close assistants, at Nadlert@ymail.com.”
JULES ADVISER ADMITS LAMBERTI INVOLVEMENT
One REDBROWARD reader emailed Nadler to ask if Lamberti was really supporting Edison Jules. Nadler replied, “It is true I was a captain under Al and he is very involved in our campaign.”
Will Edison Jules address Lamberti’s involvement in his campaign?