September 19, 2007

The Hsu-To-Mile-High Choo-Choo On Wrong Track: Spokesman

The Norman Hsu case continues on its strange path today, as the Democratic fundraiser waived his extradition challenge to return to California. His spokesman attempted what will certainly be his excuse when he appears in a San Mateo courtroom, by claiming that a disoriented Hsu got on the wrong train:

Disgraced Democratic fundraiser Norman Hsu, wanted in California on a 15-year-old felony theft conviction, agreed Wednesday to return to the state without a fight.

Hsu appeared in court, his hands cuffed and his ankles shackled, as he read legal documents waiving his rights and signed four copies of the paperwork. He also answered Judge Brian Flynn's questions about giving up his right to fight extradition. ...

A Hsu spokesman said Wednesday that he had intended to appear for his court date in California but may have mistakenly boarded a train out of state. Jason Booth said Hsu was "sick and confused" and may have thought he was boarding a Bay Area Rapid Transit subway when he instead caught an Amtrak train.

"That's what appears to be how it happened," Booth said Tuesday. "He was disoriented at the time ... We believe he suffered a psychological, mental, or physical breakdown. How that was caused I don't know. I'm not a doctor."

Hsu boarded an Amtrak train in the Bay Area in California about an hour and a half after arriving there by charter plane Sept. 5 and had a ticket for Denver when he apparently fell ill in western Colorado and had to be hospitalized.

If he bought a ticket to Denver, then he didn't get on the wrong train, did he? Apparently, the Hsu team has trouble thinking through the implications of the facts on their theories. Unless Hsu thought that Denver had relocated lock, stock, and barrel to California's Central Valley, buying a ticket for that destination indicates he wanted to leave the state instead of return for his hearing.

Hsu bowed to the inevitable by waiving extradition. The question will be whether he will start cooperating with the FBI on the source of the funds he stuffed into the pockets of Democrats across the country, including close to a million dollars for Hillary Clinton alone. He may have some motivation for cooperating now, as Joel Rosenman's $40 million loss will almost certainly turn into a much bigger fraud case than the one for which he still owes three years in a California prison.


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Comments (24)

Posted by burt | September 19, 2007 8:36 PM

Ed, your posts today have a lot to amuse ones sense of humor.

Posted by John | September 19, 2007 8:58 PM

Hillary might be getting a Hsu Hsu train for Christmas this year.

Posted by Aldo | September 19, 2007 8:59 PM

has some good back story information:

Rewind to 1996, when Hillary headed her husband's legal defense fund during his re-election bid.

On April 4 of that year, she received a damage-control briefing from fund trustees and a top White House aide about more than $600,000 in questionable donations bundled by Yah Lin "Charlie" Trie, a Chinese bagman who ran a restaurant in Little Rock, Ark.

The largest chunk of the haul — $463,000 — raised flags among fund trustees, because it was delivered by Trie in two manila envelopes stuffed full of sequentially numbered money orders from different parts of the country. All bore the same handwriting.

It was agreed at the meeting that the the dirty cash would be kept secret until after the election — and even then, the names of donors would never be disclosed. It was also agreed donors would be free to re-send any returned money.

The existence of Trie's funny money wasn't publicly acknowledged until the scandal broke in the media a month after the election.

The Clintons reluctantly returned the funds, along with an additional $122,000 raised by Trie from Asian donors with low-paying jobs.

Soon the FBI and Congress launched probes, and the White House was compelled to turn over documents from the April 1996 briefing that Hillary attended.

The smoking gun came in the form of handwritten notes taken by deputy White House chief of staff Harold Ickes.

"Charlie Trie — Money orders — Don't report names if $ are returned," Ickes wrote. "Could return all $ & ask people to resend it if they want."

Posted by msr | September 19, 2007 9:14 PM

Plus, as is clear from the Amtrak timetable, there are 14 other stops the train makes, before it gets to Grand Junction 27 hours after leaving Emeryville, CA. That would be a damn slow commuter train.

Posted by dhunter | September 19, 2007 9:20 PM

Fox reporterette at 5:00 news hour usually hosted by Britt reported on Hsu and that POLITICIANS were distancing themselves from him.

No mention of Dems or Hillary I am about done watching Fox they are no longer any different than the rest

Plus I am tired of hearing about OJ Simpson

If this were a Republican scandle someone would be forced out by now or many calling for it.

Where are the Repubs? Are we just going to let the Beast waltz into office with her impeached, disbarred, sexual deviant, co-president in tow?

Posted by Deagle | September 19, 2007 9:44 PM

Wow! No wonder lawyers are hated so...

Posted by thanos | September 19, 2007 11:23 PM

It's canny how those immigrant donors to the Clinton campaign get ill in front of the Judge, just like thisguy.

Posted by Fred | September 19, 2007 11:40 PM

That’s some rapid transit system they have there. I don't live in California, but does the BART have private rooms? In all the history of subway systems, in which hundreds of billions of people have traveled trillions of miles, I'd be willing to wager than not one person ever asked for a private room, or accidentally paid hundreds of dollars for a ticket.

Posted by Cooltom | September 20, 2007 12:43 AM

Bay Area native here. NO WAY one can confuse a BART car with an Amtrak car. BART cars look like subway cars. And they don't have sleepers. And they cost about $5 for a 30 minute trip. You could run the whole system in 3 hours.

Posted by Robert | September 20, 2007 2:43 AM

Folks tell me that private rooms on this train are always booked well in advance.

Posted by Adjoran | September 20, 2007 3:19 AM

Shucks, but y'all are some 'spicious people!

Mrs. Clinton's crack team vetted this guy, checked him out, and found him to be A-OK. How can anyone doubt that? They've been around, ya know . . .

I mean, it could happen to anybody. You're on your way to turn yourself in to serve some prison time, so obviously you're stressed. If you're running late, you're in a hurry and why would you question how much the ticket costs? Besides, some idiot millionaire gave you a bundle, who's counting?

And if you stumble into a sleeper compartment instead of a crowded subway seat, are you going to complain? And if there just happens to be vials of pills in there, you're going to swallow them all, right? Honestly, why would they put them in there for you if you weren't supposed to take them?

Certainly Hsu had some allergic reaction to the drugs, which prevented him from getting off at Vegas as he'd planned. He was supposed to help his pal OJ get some stuff back. Then he was going to get back to the LA jail, with plenty of time to spare.

Yeah, that's the ticket! Just ask Miz Clinton . . .

Posted by Anna Puna | September 20, 2007 5:30 AM


Even in Germany, barely speaking German, I never confused the S-bahns with the trains linking the cities.

Obviously the lawyers Hsu hired are as bright as he is, garden tool IQ.

Posted by swabjockey05 | September 20, 2007 5:48 AM

dhunter asked

"Where are the Repubs? Are we just going to let the Beast waltz into office with her impeached, disbarred, sexual deviant, co-president in tow?"

The Repubs won't go after it because they know Repubs also have taken “campaign money” from shysters...

MSM is on the Dhimmi side so the Repubs will always loose on this issue. Better for them to not do anything (other than pocket their own dirty money) and go on to the next warming, bridge to nowhere, Health Care etc...system is broken.

Posted by docjim505 | September 20, 2007 5:57 AM

dhunter: Are we just going to let the Beast waltz into office with her impeached, disbarred, sexual deviant, co-president in tow?

Now, now! Slick Willie is NOT a sexual deviant. He may have questionable taste in women, but he's NOT a deviant.

Posted by Tom the Barbarian | September 20, 2007 6:09 AM

Pardon me boy, is that a California Hsu-Hsu?

Posted by quickjustice | September 20, 2007 6:09 AM

The insanity defense! We must extend our thanks to Shipley for tipping us off on this one!

And of course, Team Clinton is spinning out its "Crazy Norman gave money to impressionable young Clinton staffers, but Hillary knew nothing" defense.

Taken at her word, Hillary is a dupe of Hsu's. This despite having run Bill's defense fund back in the 1990s, which accepted big Chinese bucks from Trie, but later had to return it.

So taking Hillary at her word, she's been fooled at least twice in ten years on important campaign finance issues while being advised by the same guy, Ickes. And both times, she's "managed" her "blunders" the same way: cover up, conceal, and obfuscate.

And Limbaugh doesn't take her at her word. He says she's a micromanager who supervises every detail of her campaign. Blaming her junior staffers, Limbaugh says, is an old defense attorney's trick. And the obvious conclusion one draws from that surmise is that Hillary and Bill have concocted yet another scheme to get illegal [foreign?] donations into her campaign in violation of the campaign finance laws of which John McCain is so proud.

Posted by quickjustice | September 20, 2007 6:24 AM

The only remaining questions are: "Is Hillary Clinton a Manchurian dupe, or merely a plain vanilla one?" and "Was Hillary Clinton duped at all, or did she and Bill know all along that Hsu's money, and that of those he bundled, was dirty?"

The second question raises the prospect of a conspiracy. Did the Clintons' conspire to violate the campaign finance laws? In light of what happened back in the 1990s, that speculation is plausible:

Posted by hoopster | September 20, 2007 8:33 AM

Someting seems very fishy about Joel Rosenman. No hedge fund I know of whould hand someone $40 mil and not do a very thourough background check. And from what I have heard, even cursory look at Hsu would have revealed a lot. He had no office, and no business. That could not have been hidden. So why didn't Rosenman look?

Posted by MaaddMaaxx | September 20, 2007 9:52 AM

Robert is Correct. Not only are the private rooms booked weeks in advance, the coach seats generaly disappear days in advance.

Hsu had help getting a cabin on that train!

Posted by RD | September 20, 2007 12:26 PM

The case has been filed in New York and it is $60,000,000 not $40,000,000. The reason I am so insistant that the answers to the "who" provided the bail money and delivered it, and "who" hired the fancy, schmantsy lawyers and "who" booked the private airplane, and "who" was the doctor who provided the drugs, and "who" bought the Amtrak ticket and delivered him to the Amtrak station is important is because I believe that a protective cadre has been formed around Hsu and that he is in its clutches (and can't get out not even by falling ill in Grand Junction). I believe the purpose of the "protective cadre" is not to protect the Oriental Hsu-Hsu but to protect the Clinton Express Hsu-Hsu and also the Democrat Hsu Hsu from coming down the track and creating a huge Hsu Hsu wreck. Spokesman indeed!!!!

Posted by Tim W | September 20, 2007 12:29 PM

It always amazes me that trial attornys can get up every day, put on their best suit and go to a judge and jury, stare them in the eye and shamelessly lie. How can these people live with themselves or look themselves in the mirror?

I find it even more amazing that someone would vote for a Clinton, who are even more shameless liars than trial attornys. The Clintons are the most unethical scumbags ever to hold high office. If a democrat is elected president (god help us!) let it be Obama. Even though he is naive and inexperienced, he at least appears to have character unlike the Clintons or the trial attorny Edwards.

Posted by March Hare | September 20, 2007 3:06 PM

"Jason Booth said Hsu was "sick and confused" and may have thought he was boarding a Bay Area Rapid Transit subway when he instead caught an Amtrak train."

I'm not buying it. I know of only one station that BART and Amtrak share, although BART and CalTrain share a station at the SFO Airport. CalTrain runs from San Francisco to San Jose, which is roughly North-South. And there are no private cars. Last I checked, Denver is East of San Francisco...

Posted by Del Dolemonte | September 20, 2007 10:39 PM

Not to defend Hsu, but he actually may have been able to get a sleeper on such short notice. My brother and sister-in-law and I recently on a major Amtrak train on a heavily traveled route and were offered sleeper cars a full hour after the train had left the station. And they had more than one available. If you look up the costs for such rooms on the AMTRAK website, they're not cheap.

The irony was that I refused in favor of upgrading to Business Class for $35 or so more (just to get some sleep), while my idiot kid brother and sister-in-law took the sleeper-they ended up getting no sleep due to the thin "matresses". And for that night's "sleep", they paid over $200.

Posted by Norm | September 21, 2007 12:58 AM

Well, there is no BART station near the Emeryville AMTRAK station. In fact, there's no BART station in Emeryville at all. Closest one is in Oakland at MacArthur.

And it will be hard to believe any judge in San Mateo County - just across the Bay - won't be familiar with these little details...

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