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WHITE PLAINS-A Federal grand jury here returned a 14-count indictment on Dec. 14 against former Rockland Democratic Party Chairman Paul Adler for bribery, extortion and mail fraud. The charges are in connection with real estate deals in Rockland County.

In addition to his post with the Rockland Democratic Party, Adler was a partner in the commercial brokerage firm Kunis & Adler, which merged with Prudential Rand Realty in Jan. 1996, according to court documents. The charges against Adler include allegations that he accepted bribes from a developer in exchange for his political influence on a local planning board; hid his financial relationship with the developer of the Palisades Center Mall during its approval process; and having a hidden interest in a land flip deal.

Federal court documents note that in 1996 Adler and a partner sold two contiguous tracts of land to a “middleman” developer. The same day the middleman firm sold the property to the town of Clarkstown for approximately $1 million more than it paid for it earlier in the day. Adler and his partner allegedly split about one half of the profits from the land flip, according to Federal prosecutors. It was also alleged that Adler and his partner never told the original seller of the land about Clarkstown’s interest in the property, which it had earmarked for a public golf course.

The case against Adler was first disclosed in September when the US district attorney charged him with multiple counts of bribery, extortion and mail fraud in a criminal complaint filed in the US District Court for the Southern District here.

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