The F.B.I. announced charges last week against 73 Armenian gangsters, almost half of them in the Los Angeles area, for running the largest Medicare fraud in history.
Or—to be strictly accurate—the largest the FBI yet knows about.
The indictment alleged that most of the defendants were "were Armenian nationals or immigrants and many maintained substantial ties to Armenia." They laundered their ill-gotten gains in Las Vegas casinos and/or couriered them back to Armenia.
Michael J. Gaeta, head of the New York F.B.I. office’s Russian Organized Crime Squad, explained: “New York and the U.S., to them it’s a big pot of gold, and they’re coming after it. And with the world getting smaller, it’s much easier for them to do it.”
Among the arrested: Armen Kazarian of the pleasant LA suburb of Glendale, who drives a $350,000 Rolls Royce Phantom. Kazarian is only the second “vor” (the ex-Soviet equivalent of a godfather) yet charged in the U.S.
I’d never previously heard the term “vor” but I must say, it has a ring to it—like capo di tutti capi or Keyser Söze.
Why was Kazarian in this country in the first place? He was granted asylum in the U.S. in 1996. But he subsequently returned frequently to Armenia to oversee his transcontinental criminal doings.
Naturally, this got me thinking about TV crime dramas.
Law & Order has been the most successful drama in American television history. Counting its countless spinoffs, about 900 hour-long episodes have aired. L&O’s two-decade old formula has been to take a scandal from the news, add a murder, and then show that the richest, whitest, and most conservative character dunnit.
This year, however, NBC shut down the New York-based flagship show and substituted Law & Order: Los Angeles. ... The Wednesday, October 20 episode “Sylmar” will explore the national security threat posed by ... blue-eyed, blonde Americans who espouse extremist Islam:Deputy District Attorney: “An All-American jihadi terrorist cell …”
Assistant District Attorney: “With enough explosives to take down the Staples Center!”
You can't make this stuff up. (Or, at least, I can't.)
October 19, 2010
From my column in VDARE:
Read the whole thing there and comment upon it below.