Judge Denies Separate Trial Request for Financier’s Aide

March 20, 2002

A federal judge has refused financier Martin Frankel’s request to dismiss alleged racketeering charges against former aide Mona Kim as well as a request that she be tried separately, according to the Associated Press.

U.S. District Judge Ellen Bree Burns not only found that the government properly charged Kim, but also ruled that Kim’s right to a fair trial would not be tainted if she were tried along with Frankel and three other co-defendants.

Additionally, in a recent ruling, Burns commented that virtually all of the same evidence would be admissible in a joint trial.

Frankel is charged with the theft of $200 million, which purportedly was to be invested on the behalf of insurance companies in five states. He was arrested in Germany in 1999 after an international manhunt.

Kim managed Frankel’s compound in Greenwich. She is charged with seven counts, including two counts of wire fraud, three of money laundering, and one each of racketeering and conspiracy, in a 48-count indictment against Frankel and his associates. She has pleaded innocent in all seven counts.

In her request for a separate trial, Kim insisted that she was a “low-level functionary” in Frankel’s assumed plan.

The Associated Press further reported that Kim maintains that she was unaware of her boss’ alleged wrongdoings, and insists she was merely following his orders. She asked for a dismissal of the racketeering charges, maintaining that she was not involved in managing the alleged fraudulent scheme.

Frankel is awaiting trial in the U.S. District Court in New Haven on charges of racketeering, fraud and conspiracy. He is being held in a Rhode Island jail.

Frankel and his alleged co-conspirators Sonia Howe and Gary Atnip are scheduled to go to trial on Oct. 1. All three have pleaded innocent.

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