domingo, 15 de marzo de 2009


CONGRESSIONAL RECORD—Extensions of Remarks E653

Linda Meyer, the excellent staff and all of the

members of United Bay City Credit Union a

most joyous 50th anniversary, with many more

successful ones to come.







Wednesday, April 14, 1999

Mr. ACKERMAN. Mr. Speaker, I rise in

honor of Lou Matarazzo, president of the New

York City Patrolmen’s Benevolent Association,

and Ron Devito, 2nd vice-president of the

New York City Patrolmen’s Benevolent Association.

They are being honored on April 15,

1999, at the Terrace in the Park in Flushing

Meadows, NY, on the occasion of their retirement.

Their leadership in the New York City

Policy Department and as officers of the PBA

is truly inspirational to all New Yorkers.

Well known for his devotion to his fellow officers

and for being ready, willing and able to

help a colleague in need, under any circumstances.

Matarazzo has combined a

hands-on approach with a thorough knowledge

of police and human affairs. He began

his career in law enforcement as a rookie patrolman

in 1964. In 1969, he was elected a

PBA delegate from the 108 Precinct and held

that position for 9 years, serving on both the

Negotiating and the ‘‘Cop of the Month’’ Committees.

In 1977, he was elected the PBA

Queens Trustee and soon began serving as

chairman of the board of trustees and chairman

of the Law Committee. In February 1991,

he became the PBA Recording Secretary and

in June 1991, he was elected treasurer. He

has held his current position as PBA president

since 1995.

Matarazzo served as a member of the Police

Pension Board, and is an expert in the

field of disabilities. He is also a member of

many civic and police groups, including the

Columbia Association, of which he was a recent

‘‘Man of the Year.’’ He has been cited for

excellence by the Police Honor Legion, the

New York Shields, the Nassau County Shields

and the Holy Name Society. Currently, he

serves as Chairman of the Public Employees

Conference in New York States, which has

over one million members.

A resident of Nassau County, Matarazzo

has been married to his wife, Fran, for 36

years. Together they have 5 children and 6


A 42-years veteran police officer, Ron

Devito has been a PBA delegate since 1972.

He joined the force in 1957 and was assigned

to the 103rd precinct where he worked in uniform

for 20 years, before being elected to the

Executive Board of the Policeman’s Benevolent


In 1977, he was elected as the Financial

Secretary for Queens County, Treasurer, and

then 2nd Vice President of the PBA. During

his time with the PBA, Devito has served on

the Pension Board, the Tellers Committee;

was an original member of the Committee on

Political Action; was director of the ‘‘Cop of the

Month’’ Committee and served as the Chairman

of the Board of Directors Executive


Devito has been awarded one exceptional

Merit Citation, two Meritorious Police Citations,

four excellent Police Citations and the Nassau

Shields ‘‘Cop of the Month’’ Award.

A former sergeant in the U.S. Marine Corps,

Devito is marred to the former Patricia Guinan.

They have three children and three grandchildren.

Mr. Speaker, I ask my colleagues to join

with me in honoring these two outstanding








Wednesday, April 14, 1999

Mr. TOWNS. Mr. Speaker, I rise today to

share with you my concern towards the struggles

that a young democracy in Latin America

is facing. I am referring to Argentina and its

questioned judicial system, still so tainted by

the memories of past dictatorships. I would

like to talk to you about a small Buenos Aires

based non-governmental organization that has

to bear the harassment and persecution of a

corrupt judiciary. I hope that after I share with

you my concerns you will then be in a better

position to discharge our responsibility of expressing

some words of caution to our citizens

and U.S. based corporations that are considering

whether to make investments in Argentina.

On February 1st, President Clinton responded

to a missive in a salvo of bipartisan

letters from colleagues legislators concerning

the Buenos Aires Yoga School case. Clinton

began his response by observing: ‘‘I share

your commitment to the protection and enforcement

of human rights in Argentina and

around the world.’’ Our U.S. president then

went on to note that: ‘‘Our embassy in Buenos

Aires has been closely monitoring this matter

[the BAYS case] for the past several years,

and has raised it on several occasions with

appropriate officials in the Argentine Ministry

of Justice. Like other cases in the Argentine

judicial system, this case has taken too long to

resolve. While I agree that we cannot intervene

in the Argentine judicial process, we will

continue to follow the case and urge the Argentine

government to resolve it as expeditiously

as possible.’’

The BAYS case has been high on my agenda

and that of many of our colleagues for

much of the past year where we have expressed

our unease over the treatment of this

Argentine group. Many of our colleagues, in

order to seek justice for BAYS, have sent letters

to President Menem calling for his intervention—

never receiving an answer, the case

has achieved significant leverage among us,

U.S. policy makers, as an important component

in the hemispheric policy formulations.

Clinton’s letter about BAYS’s plight pointedly

referred to this highly controversial case. One

which was initiated over six years before when

faculty and students of the Yoga school became

a chosen target for Argentina’s notoriously

flawed judiciary vindictiveness of several

relatives from BAYS members. The philosophical

and culturally-centered educational

institution was accused of ‘‘sexual corruption

of adults’’ and has attracted unprecedented

prosecutorial and judicial misconduct from Argentine

authorities since then. Almost all outside

observers who have examined the case

considered it unfathomable why so much negative

energy has been dissipated against such

a small group which, in fact, has won considerable

renown abroad for its artistic accomplishments

and social programs. One compelling

explanation is that the case has triggered

a bundle of latent and overt ultramontaine,

neo-Nazi and deep-seated anti-Semitic strains

lying just below the surface of Argentina’s historic

memory, which may be fundamental to

why this largely Jewish organization of 300

members has been subjected to its extraordinarily

protracted ordeal. In the playing out of

the case, it was also shown that the indignation

of the Argentine media—to much of which

venality is no stranger—is highly selective and

that the press, in this case, has been revealed

as a lapdog of the political establishment. It

has not shown itself as a forensic lion when it

came to confronting the slavishly purchased

performance of the country’s court system in

general, and its outrageous behavior regarding

the BAYS saga, where under-the-table subventions

must have become the rule in forcing

the prolongation of this case.

Over much of the past six years, members

of BAYS have been experiencing unrelenting

harassment at the hands of Argentine judicial

authorities, including totally unjustified and violent

illegal searches of their homes and offices,

imprisonment of innocent members, the

hectoring of their children, and the seizure of

their personal property which to this day has

not been returned. All this has transpired even

though no compelling incriminating evidence

has been presented by the prosecution

against the Yoga School, the statute of limitations

has since expired, and the Argentine Supreme

Court has nullified the original charges.

Some of the prosecutors and judges engaged

in hounding the BAYS systematically have engaged

in unprofessional behavior, which at

times has included resorting to the use of

scurrilous anti-Semitic remarks made in public

settings—enough to result in the first judge

being impeached by the national legislature. In

this case, reputably, justice has been for sale.

The BAYS affair provides a telling example

of the corrosive role that corruption may have

played in the form of payoffs to court personnel

overseeing such cases as the one involving

BAYS, from several wealthy and alienated

relatives of BAYS members. Even one of

the more controversial judges involved in the

case is ready to acknowledge that the alienated

relatives have a psychological, if not neurotic

need to establish that it was the organization

rather than themselves who had generated

their family’s personal travails. In fact,

a close examination of each of these plaintiffs

conduct reveals that in a number of these

cases, much of the social anomie brought on

by intrafamily strife existed even before the

founding of the organization. The harassment

of the BAYS also provides an insight into the

role played by an extremist ideology in Argentina’s

tainted judicial system, and how little

has changed since the era of military rule beginning

in the 1970’s, when government authorities

murdered, with impunity, upwards of

20,000 innocent civilians in the country. Many

of the judges now on the bench were appointed

to their relatively lucrative positions at

that time, with their modus operandi still reflecting

the low standing that people of their

political persuasion traditionally have accorded

No hay comentarios:

Publicar un comentario