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Bud Garner
Sentry columnist
Copyright 2012

Volume XXI Phone (954) 532-2000 Fax 954-532-2002 Editor@flsentry.com
Click Here for Current Edition

Bail denied for music promoter charged in $300 million fraud
Jack Utsick extradited from Brazil last year

A judge has refused to grant bail for a former music promoter who produced shows for acts such as the Rolling Stones, Elton John and Aerosmith and was recently extradited from Brazil to face a $300 million criminal fraud case.
U.S. Magistrate Judge Edwin Torres said Wednesday there was ample evidence Jack Utsick, 72, might attempt to flee prosecution.
Authorities say he took off for Brazil in 2007 amid investigations by the FBI and Securities and Exchange Commission into his Worldwide Entertainment Inc. promotion company.
Utsick was extradited last year.
Authorities say the concert business was actually a Ponzi scheme, with older investors being paid with money from newer ones. An estimated 3,300 investors were defrauded out of nearly $300 million.
Utsick will plead not guilty to mail fraud charges.

Wife, Mother Of Missing Millionaire Want Him Declared Dead

A South Florida missing man’s wife and mother have been battling it out to have control over his estate but for the first time they are on the same side.
Both want him to be officially declared dead so they have access to his money.
In the family feud over missing multi-millionaire Guma Aguiar’s fortune, his wife faced off against her mother and sister in-law on Wednesday.
The trio have been rivaling over real estate in Israel valued at about $12 million since Guma Aguiar disappeared almost three years ago.
On the stand Wednesday, Aguira’s wife and mother of his four kids immediately started to tear up as she was questioned about what happened after she reported the millionaire missing.
“The police showed up at our house and said they found his boat had washed ashore,” said Jamie Aguiar.
The boat was found around 1:00 a.m.
Surveillance video shows him hours earlier at his Ft. Lauderdale home just before he boarded his boat and left, never to be seen or heard from again.
The lawyers also questioned the mother about Aguiars whereabouts. She said she hasn’t heard from her oldest son since June 19, 2012.
The wife also testified that there has been no activity on his bank accounts for nearly three years.
Lawyers brought out the lead detective in Aguiar’s missing person investigation, Detective Steven Novak, who told the judge about the condition in which his boat was found.
“The boat was ashore&ldots;the ignition was in the on position. The lights were on. The board and the throttle was in the forward position,” said Novak.
Both the mother and wife are hoping this information is enough to persuade a judge to declare Guma Aguiar dead.
Once the decision is made to declare Aguiar dead, the feud over his money and millions of dollars in real estate will likely continue.
The judge did not make a decision on Wednesday.
The lawyers for the wife plan to bring two more expert witnesses to testify Thursday morning.

Judge Slams DCF Over Children Not Getting Care

Florida’s Department of Children and Families has been notorious for its failures to protect children on its watch. Just this month, in yet the latest tragedy, five year-old Phoebe Jonchuck was thrown to her death from a bridge by her father, despite earlier calls to DCF’s hotline that the man was a danger to his children.
In a Miami-Dade courtroom Wednesday, the issue was the failure of DCF to provide residential psychiatric treatment for severely disturbed children. Judge Michael Hanzman had called the hearing for DCF to “show cause” why it should not be sanctioned over the mental health treatment issue.
“Time and time again, I’ve ordered these children into psychiatric residential treatment and these orders have not been timely complied with,” the judge said. “I do not believe it is appropriate or acceptable for children who need psychiatric care to have to wait months to secure a bed,” Hanzman said.
DCF has pointed the finger of blame at the Agency For Health Care Administration (AHCA), which is charged with providing mental health facilities. AHCA has in turn blamed DCF, and private companies to whom the state has outsourced residential psychiatric treatment.
The Judge was having none of it.
“Make sure that those contractors honor their obligations and actually secure enough facilities to place these children,” the judge declared.
Seemingly coincidentally, Governor Rick Scott Wednesday announced he will propose an increase of $80 million in DCF’s budget. The governor saying in a statement, “Protecting our children is a top priority for me.”
The budget announcement released Wednesday did not directly address the issue of residential treatment facilities for mentally disturbed children, and DCF had not responded to inquiries from CBS4 News by the time this story was posted.
Back in the Miami-Dade courtroom, Judge Hanzman said the state must do better.
“I’m not a policy maker and I don’t make legislation,” the judge said. “This is a problem. It just happens over and over again and the waits seem to be getting longer.”
The Wednesday hearing specifically involved an 11 year-old boy who the judge ordered into a program more than a month ago. A DCF represenative said it hoped to have the child in a facility in “about two weeks.”
Judge Hanzman continued the “show cause” hearing for two weeks, ordering the bureaucrats to get the child into treatment. He stopped short of suggesting that someone might yet be held in contempt.

Gold Digger Arrested In Palm Beach County

JAfter two years on the run, a treasure hunter embroiled in a legal fight over lost treasure, was tracked down at a hotel in Palm Beach County.
Tommy Thompson vanished after failing to show up at a key court hearing in Ohio where he was being sued by investors.
Thompson gained notoriety 27 years ago when he found the sunken ‘SS Central America’, also known as the ship of gold.
“It seems complete role reversal. The hunter became the hunted. He was on the run for two years,” said U.S. Marshal Barry Golden.
When Thompson found the Central America which sank in a hurricane off the South Carolina Coast in 1857, much of the gold was sold to a marketing group for 50 million dollars.
Thompson had been paid $12 million dollars by investors who said they never saw any return. That led to a lawsuit and Thompson’s disappearance until Tuesday.
Federal authorities said Thompson and his companion went to great lengths to conceal themselves, using cash only and no car.
It appears they had access to a lot of the money and it was difficult to track them down.
Acting on a tip from Ohio, Marshals zeroed in on Thompson’s companion on Tuesday and followed her for seven hours.
“They had no vehicles. She was using buses and taxis to get around. They were able to follow her to the hotel and make an arrest,” said Golden.
On Wednesday, Thompson told a federal judge he was ill and so his hearing was re-scheduled for Thursday

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