Married-to-the-Mob Cash Clash
By Alex Ginsberg
N ew York Post
May 14, 2007
The star witness in last year's sensational mob-cops case is denying
bombshell allegations he paid for the wedding of his daughter - now
a state judge - with money he borrowed from the mob.
Burton Kaplan claims the
opposite: that he lent money to bankroll the nuptials of
Luchese underboss Anthony Casso's daughter.
The accusations are part of
a battle in which Kaplan is seeking to evict Casso's son from a Mill
Basin house that both claim.
It was the son, Anthony
Jr., who first made the accusation in court papers that his father
had paid for the 1985 wedding of Kaplan's daughter, now sitting
state Supreme Court Justice Deborah Kaplan.
But in an affidavit filed
last month, Burton Kaplan shot back, claiming that he never borrowed
a cent from Casso.
And Kaplan's lawyer,
Michael Rosenthal, said in his affidavit that Kaplan told Casso Jr.
at a 2006 meeting that Kaplan had lent money to the elder Casso to
pay for Casso Jr.'s sister's wedding.
By Alex Ginsberg
New York Post
March 19, 2007
The judge wasn't just
married by the mob. They put a roof over her head, too.
Jailed Luchese underboss
Anthony "Gaspipe" Casso claims he paid $80,000 during the 1980s for
an apartment for future-acting Supreme Court Justice Deborah Kaplan,
the daughter of his pal, Burton Kaplan.
In documents he wrote in
federal prison in Florence, Colo., Casso is also said to have
confirmed reports that he lent Burton Kaplan - the star witness in
the Mob Cops trial - $150,000 for the future judge's 1985 wedding.
And, in a shocking twist,
Casso claims that he has twice recently written to the Manhattan
judge to enlist her help in preventing her dad from evicting Casso "Gaspipe's"
son from his childhood home.
That eviction case, a
bizarre postscript to the Mob Cops trial, began last October when
Burton Kaplan, a longtime drug trafficker and Casso buddy, started
proceedings to boot Casso's son from his Mill Basin, Brooklyn, home.
Casso Sr. allegedly had
deeded the property to Burton in 1985 as part of a money-laundering
scheme, with the understanding that he would one day return it.
But things went bad when
Casso was arrested in 1993 and assumed that Burton had dropped a
dime on him, sources said.
Casso put a hit on his
former friend, prompting Burton to try to evict the son as payback,
Casso Jr.'s lawyer, Bruce Baron, claims in papers fighting the
Bruce Baron declined to
comment specifically on the document involving the judge, but said
he believed it could bolster his bid to expose Burton Kaplan's
ownership of the Mill Basin house as a fraud.
Deborah Kaplan, who enjoys
a good reputation on the bench, has been dogged by constant
revelations about her father's past since he emerged as the star
witness against Mob Cops Stephen Caracappa and Louis Eppolito.
Through a spokesman, she
said Casso's allegations about her home and wedding were news to
Burton Kaplan's lawyer
declined any comment.
The Casso document is not
specific as to the location of the apartment he claims to have
purchased, nor the time period.
But, according to a source,
Casso did place the $150,000 wedding loan at around the time he gave
Burton Kaplan the deed to the house, noting in the document that his
then-friend was broke
Additional Reporting by
'Revenge' Vs. Mafia
By Alex Ginsberg
March 6, 2007
New York Post
If you can't settle a
vendetta with blood, try real estate.
Burton Kaplan, a Mafia informant in the "mob cops"
case, was getting back at his one-time ally, Luchese underboss
Anthony "Gaspipe" Casso, when he sued to evict the capo's son from
his Brooklyn home last year, court papers reveal.
"When asked why, after all these years, he was
trying to take the premises . . . Kaplan stated that he's getting
even for Anthony Casso Sr. ordering a contract on his [Kaplan's]
life," lawyers for Anthony Casso Jr. claim in a countersuit to the
eviction filed last week.
According to the countersuit, Kaplan sat down with
Casso Jr., at a Brooklyn restaurant in late 2006 and admitted that
he'd taken the deed to the house as part of a money-laundering
scheme with the father.
It seems the Luchese underboss had "sold" the Mill
Basin home to Kaplan in 1985, with the expectation that it would be
transferred back to the Cassos at an appropriate time.
Kaplan allegedly told Casso Sr.'s late wife that
he'd give the house back for $125,000. That demand was upped to
$650,000 in 2006, the papers allege.
Now What Did You Do?
Use Mafia Loot to Pay for My Wedding?
By John Marzulli
New York Daily News
Saturday, March 3rd, 2007
She was married by the mob.
A Manhattan judge's lavish wedding was paid for by Mafia mass
murderer Anthony (Gaspipe) Casso as a favor to the mobbed-up father
of the bride, according to court papers obtained by the Daily News.
The shocking allegation is the latest embarrassment for acting
Supreme Court Justice Deborah Kaplan, whose father, Burton Kaplan,
had mob ties and was convicted of drug trafficking.
Anthony (Gaspipe) Casso and
In a suit filed yesterday in Brooklyn Supreme Court,
Burton Kaplan (r.), who borrowed
Anthony Casso Jr., the son of the jailed-for-life Luchese
borrowed $150,000 from
Burton Kaplan recently admitted to him
Casso to pay for the wedding
that he borrowed $150,000
from the elder Casso to pay
of his daughter, Deborah
for the wedding.
"She has no knowledge of the allegations contained in the suit,"
said Bob Liff, a spokesman retained by Deborah Kaplan.
The loan was made around the same time as an alleged sham
purchase by Kaplan of Casso's home on E. 72nd St. in Brooklyn as
part of a "money laundering deal," the suit filed by attorney Bruce
Casso Jr., who still lives in the house with his wife and infant
son, is fighting eviction proceedings started by Kaplan. His
attorney Bruce Baron also is seeking a stay of the trial in Brooklyn
Kaplan allegedly fessed up about the wedding loan during a secret
sitdown he sought with Casso Jr. at a barbecue restaurant in
Brooklyn last October, just one month after Kaplan was sprung on
bail as a reward for his testimony
Justice Deborah Kaplan
against the Mafia cops.
Kaplan, 72, guarded by two federal agents at the meeting,
allegedly told Casso Jr. that he "partially repaid" the wedding
loan, according to the suit.
Deborah Kaplan was elected to Civil Court in 2002 and promoted to
the Supreme Court after her father's mob ties became public.
With Barbara Ross
Kaplan also made sham
Casso's home (above) on E. 72nd
St. in Brooklyn.
Rat's Nest - Mob Turncoat Bids to Evict Capo's Son
By Susan Edelman
New York Post
November 19, 2006
19, 2006 -- Mobster-turned-rat Burton Kaplan is trying to evict the
son of his former Mafia partner from a Brooklyn house that he
admitted taking in a money-laundering scheme.
Kaplan, who was
sprung from prison this year after testifying against the two
accused "mob cops," is trying to toss the son of
Burton Kaplan has filed a notice of
of imprisoned Luchese
termination against Casso's son on this
"Gaspipe" Casso from the Mill
valued at more than 700,000.
Casso Jr., 33, lives in the house, his childhood home, with his wife
and baby. He said Kaplan has never paid a dime for the house or its
"This is my house, and I
don't deserve to get thrown out with a newborn," Casso Jr. told The
Post. "It was fraudulently obtained by Kaplan."
two-family house features three bedrooms, a kitchen and 11/2
bathrooms upstairs, plus downstairs a studio
GET OUT: Burton
Kaplan has filed a notice of
with a kitchen and bath.
termination against Casso's son on this Brooklyn
Casso Jr. said his late
mother, Lillian Casso, who bought the house for $60,000 in 1960, was
"forced" by her criminal husband to sign it over to Kaplan in 1985
for a purported $450,000 as part of a scam. The Casso family
remained in the home without paying any rent to Kaplan.
In 2004, shortly before
Kaplan turned state's witness, Lillian visited him in prison to beg
him to return the house to her. But Kaplan refused unless she paid
him $125,000 up front, Casso Jr. said.
"He was trying to shake her
down for her own house," he said.
Joseph Mure, Casso Jr.'s
lawyer, said his client pays all the taxes on the house, plus
utilities and maintenance.
Kaplan "never paid a single
bill," Mure said.
Kaplan acknowledged at the
trial this year of NYPD Detectives Louis Eppolito and Stephen
Caracappa that in the 1985 house transfer, the elder Casso gave him
$200,000 in cash to put in the bank and pay back to Casso in checks,
as a fake mortgage. Kaplan admitted it was money-laundering meant to
hide Casso's assets from the government.
That same year, Kaplan
transferred his own home on 85th Street in Bensonhurst in order to
shield his own assets from the government, claimed private
investigator Dave Giordano, who has probed Kaplan's dealings on
behalf of Eppolito. The house went to his daughter, Deborah
Kaplan, now a Manhattan Civil Court judge, Giordano said.
"The government was so hell
bent on making a case against two detectives, they chose to ignore
the misdeeds of the Kaplan family," Giordano said.
Attorney Michael Rosenthal
said Burt Kaplan hired him to file a "notice of termination," the
first step in an eviction.
Ethics Flap over Judge's 'Family' Home
By Susan Edelman
New York Post
November 19, 2006
Manhattan Judge Deborah
Kaplan failed to disclose on ethics forms that she reaped $850,000
last year, when she sold the Brooklyn home that her mobster father,
Burton Kaplan, gave her.
The former go-between for a
Luchese hit man, Burton put the Bensonhurst duplex in her name in
1985. Deborah grew up in the 85th Street house, and her mother
continued to live in it when Burton went to prison for drug
Judge Kaplan failed for
five years to report that she owned the house after joining the
court system in 1998. Then, she left out the June 2005 sale on her
required annual financial disclosure form.
She admitted the omission
when questioned by The Post on Friday.
"She thanks you for
pointing out that she did not report the sale of the house, and she
is putting in an amendment now," said her spokesman, George Artz.
"She paid all the taxes on the house. Obviously, it was an oversight
on her part."
But the state Commission on
Judicial Conduct will still likely investigate, said a source
familiar with the commission.
Her Mob-Rat Father
By Zach Haberman and Todd
New York Post
March 17, 2006
Mob rat Burton Kaplan's daughter - a Manhattan Criminal Court judge -
lashed out at her dad yesterday for testimony he gave that implied
he invited a bunch of mobsters to her wedding so she could get
clients as a defense attorney.
"I am very offended that my
father thought he could help my career by inviting criminals to my
wedding," Judge Deborah Kaplan said through a spokesman yesterday.
The gangland guest list for
Kaplan's 1985 wedding to Burton
to fellow attorney Harlan Silverstein reads like a
testifying at the trial of a
a who's who of La Cosa Nostra.
accused mob cop Louis
Eppolito, said he invited Among the partying wise guys
mobsters to the 1985 wedding "Little Vic" Amuso and Anthony "Gaspipe" Casso,
of daughter Deborah Kaplan the
boss and underboss of the Luchese crime family
to help her career fellow
The names of the wedding guests - along with pictures
attorney Harlan Silverstein
of the soiree - were introduced in Brooklyn federal
like a who's who of La
court on Wednesday as her dad testified at the trial
of accused mob cops Louis Eppolito and Stephen
During cross-examination of
Burton Kaplan yesterday, one of the cops' lawyers, Ed Hayes, asked
him why he invited so many mobsters.
"At the time of my
daughter's wedding, I didn't know what she would do down the road,"
he said. "I thought that she might be a criminal-defense lawyer."
Judge Kaplan took this to
mean that her dad was angling to introduce her to potential clients.
The St. John's University Law School grad did become a defense
attorney before being elected to the bench in 2002.
She only helped the poor as
a Legal Aid attorney, she said.
"My career from the
beginning was as a lawyer for Legal Aid, representing indigent
people," she said through her spokesman, George Arzt.
"My father's actions
continue to be very painful to my family."
There has never been any
indication that Judge Kaplan was ever involved in her dad's affairs
- although she has been aware for most of her life that he's been in
trouble with the law.
In 1973, when she was 12,
she and her mother pleaded with federal Judge Jack Weinstein - the
very judge before whom the elder Kaplan is testifying this week - to
reduce a four-year prison term on a theft rap.
When her dad was put on
trial for masterminding a $10 million marijuana-trafficking ring,
she testified as a character witness in order to save him from
serious jail time.
The operation was run out
of a warehouse where the judge worked while in law school. But she
apparently knew nothing of the crooked business.
Her father - eventually
sentenced to 27 years in prison on drug-running charges - apparently
wishes he had a better relationship with her.
After saying yesterday that
"my daughter adores me," Kaplan wavered on the topic when questioned
by defense attorneys.
"I think she still loves
me," he added. "But she lost a lot of respect for me."
At one point, Hayes asked
him, "You failed her, didn't you."
"Yes," was all he could say.
Cops Were Gonna Betray Me'
Drug Trafficker Tells Jury Why He Agreed to Testify
Against 2 Ex-detectives
By John Marzulli
New York Daily News
March 15, 2006
The fed's star witness
against Louis Eppolito and Stephen Caracappa testified yesterday
that his daughter - a city Criminal Court judge - had for years
urged him to rat out the reputed Mafia cops.
But convicted drug dealer
Burton Kaplan said he finally decided to cooperate only after he
became convinced the former NYPD detectives were going to turn
"My wife and my daughter
had been asking me to cooperate from the first day," said Kaplan,
72, referring to a 1996 arrest for marijuana trafficking. "I didn't
Kaplan's daughter Deborah,
45, is a respected jurist who was elected to the bench in 2002. She
oversees drug treatment cases in Manhattan.
Her father, a garment
manufacturer and mob associate with a long criminal history, said he
also resisted entreaties from law enforcement. But something changed
in 2004 as he was sitting in a federal jail serving a 27-year
For one thing, his daughter
adopted a baby boy. His grandson is now 2-1/2 years old.
"I wanted someday to be
able to spend some time with him," he told a spellbound gallery in
Brooklyn Federal Court.
But he added, "I can't
honestly say I did this for my family. I did it, in all honesty,
because I felt that I was gonna be made the scapegoat in this case."
As the admitted middleman
between Luchese crime family underboss Anthony (Gaspipe) Casso and
the two detectives, Kaplan's testimony is expected to detail in
coming days how Eppolito, 57, and Caracappa, 64, came to be hit men
for the mob.
The witness wasted no time
showing he had been on intimate terms with both cops as he answered
questions put to him by Assistant U.S. Attorney Robert Henoch.
Peering from large
spectacles, the owlish-looking Kaplan identified the defendants
right out of the gate, calling Eppolito "Louie" and Caracappa
Kaplan said he suffers from
a litany of ailments, including a bout with "prostrate" cancer, but
he looked tan and his voice was steady.
He said he was introduced
to the detectives through Eppolito's cousin Frank Santora, whom
Kaplan met in prison around 1982.
After Santora was killed in
1987, Kaplan said he began meeting directly with Eppolito and later
Caracappa, despite reservations about doing crimes with cops.
He described their
"business relationship" this way: "They brought me information about
wiretaps, phone taps, informants, ongoing investigations and
But two years ago, he
became convinced the Brooklyn district attorney's office was going
to make a case after all these years, and that the Mafia cops would
"I seen an awful lot of
guys that I thought were standup guys go bad," he said. "I didn't
think [Eppolito and Caracappa] would stand up ... and I would be at
the defense table now and Steve and Louie would be sitting up here."
and Caracappa admit knowing Kaplan, but deny committing any crimes.
Outside court, Eppolito put up a strong front. "He doesn't bother
me," he said of Kaplan's testimony.
All in the Family:
A Career Criminal and His Daughter the Judge
At the very moment Burton
Kaplan the life-long criminal was taking the stand in the Mafia cop
trial at Brooklyn Federal Court, his daughter the judge was on the
bench in Manhattan Criminal Court.
"Hon. Deborah Kaplan," read
the nameplate to the left of the double doors to Part SA, the SA
standing for substance abuse.
In her black robes, Judge
Kaplan would have made any father proud, even a father such as hers.
She is the daughter of a major drug trafficker who has figured in
several murders. The guests at her wedding included Mafia boss
Anthony (Gaspipe) Casso.
But, she was also a top
student at the State University of New York in Albany and at St.
John's Law School. She became a senior trial counsel at Legal Aid
and went on to help the courts devise drug treatment programs.
In 1997, she testified on
her father's behalf in a case involving a $10 million-a-year pot
smuggling operation. But she also joined her mother in pressing her
father to cooperate with the government. He continued to resist even
after being hit with a 27-year sentence.
"My wife and daughter had
been asking me to cooperate from that first day and I didn't do it,"
the father said yesterday.
Finally, fearing the two
"Mafia cops" would turn against him, he did as his family had been
pushing him to do for almost a decade. It seems that if the story of
the Gottis is the sins of the father, then the story of the Kaplans
just may be the virtues of the daughter.
For to watch the daughter
on the bench in Manhattan the day her father was on the stand in
Brooklyn was to see a judge who is unquestionably smart and
dedicated, strong but not severe, tough enough but ultimately
A detractor might have
suggested there was a touch of the princess in the vase of yellow
and pink roses set on the bench to her right and the silver-framed
family photo placed before her.
But she proved as
hardworking as anybody as one case followed another. She summed up
the present existence of a drug abuser who appeared before her after
absconding from a treatment program he had entered in lieu of jail.
"A life that is less than
law abiding," she said.
She offered to give the man
another chance, but lest she be taken as a softie, she upped the
jail time he would face if he took off again. He scuffled away and
the next defendant stepped up, charged with shoplifting as well as
The prosecutor offered a
plea bargain of 60 days. The defense noted that there was a
discrepancy between the charge sheet and the supporting affidavit as
to whether the defendant actually attempted to leave the store with
the merchandise in question.
Kaplan summoned the
prosecution and the defense up to the bench for a sidebar. They had
a few quiet words and the defense lawyer whispered in his client's
ear. The defendant nodded and pleaded guilty in exchange for a
sentence of 20 days.
"Thank you, your honor,"
the defendant said.
Then came a man who was
offered five days' community service if he pleaded guilty to drug
possession. He relayed a request through his attorney.
"How about five days'
jail?" the attorney asked.
"How about seven?" Kaplan
The defendant nodded.
"That's acceptable, your
honor," the attorney said.
The defendant was led off
in handcuffs and Kaplan moved on to another petty drug case as her
father testified at the big Mafia cop case in Brooklyn.
The judge in the Brooklyn
case was Jack Weinstein, who also presided at Burton Kaplan's trial
for dealing in stolen clothing back in 1973. Deborah Kaplan, then
age 12, had appeared with her mother in Weinstein's court, asking
him to cut her father's four-year sentence.
Weinstein had already given
the father probation on a fraud case six years before and no doubt
felt a touch betrayed to see him in trouble again. The most
Weinstein would do was recommend Burton Kaplan be considered for
parole at the earliest possible date.
came out only to betray Weinstein again, but now that little girl is
herself a judge, and by all indications a very good one. The Gottis
make you say, "It figures," but the Kaplans leave you thinking, "Go
Princess Who Became a NYC Judge
By Susan Edelman
New York Post
May 22, 2005
Deborah Kaplan enjoyed a
pampered youth as the "princess" daughter of a mob-connected crook
and drug trafficker, and loyally defended him even as she rose to
become a Manhattan Criminal Court judge.
She was only 12 when her
dedication to dad career criminal Burton Kaplan was first tested.
She and her mother pleaded
with U.S. Judge Jack Weinstein in 1973 to reduce Burton's four-year
prison term for stealing a truckload of pilfered clothes. Weinstein,
who had given Burton probation for fraud in 1967, refused.
But the ordeal helped shape
Deborah's future. Described as depressed over her father's absence,
she was inspired to become a lawyer "so she could get him out of
jail," a one-time friend recalled.
Six years later, her father
was busted again, for making and distributing Quaaludes, and spent
another three years at a federal prison camp in Allenwood, Pa.
And in 1997, when Burton
Kaplan went on trial for masterminding a $10 million
marijuana-trafficking ring, Deborah, then a Legal Aid lawyer, came
to daddy's defense again, testifying to try to keep him out of
prison. He was convicted and sentenced to 27 years.
But it wasn't until Burton,
a reputed Luchese associate, recently was revealed as the star
witness against accused NYPD mob hit men Stephen Caracappa and Louis
Eppolito that the Kaplan family connection publicly emerged: The
respected jurist was raised by an alleged gangster.
He doted on his only child
his "princess," as she was called at trial.
"She never wanted for
anything," said Monica Galpine, a one-time pal who became a
prosecution witness against Burton Kaplan. "She was spoiled."
Deborah "had every wish
granted," including a lavish wedding at a Long Island catering hall
in 1985. Guests included Anthony "Gaspipe" Casso who years later as
a Luchese underboss allegedly gave the accused mob cops instructions
to kill through Burton Kaplan.
Earlier, Deborah's mom,
Eleanor, threw wads of cash into a gift "wishing well" at the young
lawyer's bridal shower, recalled Galpine, who worked at Burton's
wholesale-clothing business. The cash, she said, looks like the same
cash that came from stapled pay envelopes that Eleanor had stashed
in her office drawer every week for months.
By all accounts, father and
daughter were extremely close. "She loved him enormously," said a
She benefited from his
generosity. While attending SUNY Albany, Burton had his business
partner and partner in crime Thomas Galpine, move furniture into
Deborah's off-campus apartment each year.
Even after Deborah got
married, Galpine did work on the Manhattan apartment where Deborah
lived with her husband, lawyer Harlan Silverstein, ex-wife Monica
Monica faced off against
Deborah at Burton's 1997 drug-dealing and tax-evasion trial. Her ex,
Thomas, was also charged in the massive pot empire.
Burton's defense lawyer
called Deborah as his star witness noting she was an award-winning
"public service" attorney. Deborah painted Monica as a drunk who was
"incapable of telling the truth" testimony that Monica calls "lies
Deborah described her own
family as tight-knit.
While in law school at St.
John's University, she sometimes helped out at her dad's Staten
Island warehouse, doing typing and paperwork.
She later visited on free
afternoons while working for Legal Aid, and sometimes slept at the
family's Bensonhurst home when her father was away on business, so
her mom wouldn't be alone.
Never accused of any
illegal activities, she apparently didn't know the warehouse became
what prosecutors called the "headquarters" of her father's marijuana
operation. The tons of pot he distributed were stored elsewhere, and
Burton usually conducted his criminal conversations outside the
She acknowledged that her
parents' handsome three-family home assessed at $336,000 in 2000 was
put in her name as part of a "tax and estate plan." She also said
that her dad had loaned her husband $2,800 to finish law school.
While Monica said "thugs"
and "unsavory characters" frequented the Kaplan home and business,
friends doubted Deborah knew of ongoing criminal activity.
Her skinny, bespectacled
dad was a "master of deception," prosecutors said, who lived an
outwardly modest life while raking in and hiding millions.
But Judd Burstein, who
defended Burton and once hired Deborah as a legal intern, said she
was painfully aware of her dad's criminal past.
"Her family circumstances
have always been a difficult cross to bear, and she did so
gracefully," he said.
Her colleagues said she
never discussed her father.
"She is a nice person. She
is a fun person. And she's one fantastic judge," said Manhattan
Supreme Court Justice Juanita Bing Newton. "There is no one who is
harder-working than Debbie Kaplan."
Deborah declined comment
last week after issuing a statement: "I am deeply saddened to learn
of the conduct attributed to my father. This is a painful time for
me and my family and we ask that our privacy be respected."
Deborah Kaplan is widely
praised as a lawyer and judge.
As a Legal Aid attorney in
1996, she helped win the reversal of a manslaughter conviction
against a client who fired a stray bullet that killed a 9-year-old
girl sleeping in her family's car, citing trial "errors."
Deborah gained prestige
when named president of the Women's Bar Association of the State of
New York in 2000. Plugged into Democratic circles, she was elected
to the bench in 2002, and joined the Criminal Court.
She handled the case of an
out-of-work accountant who stabbed an East Village bouncer to death
for enforcing the smoking ban in 2003.
Her duties include
overseeing a special drug court for nonviolent offenders.
Court spokesman David
Bookstaver called her one of most "straitlaced, serious and
professional" women on the bench.
"We cannot blame the
children for the sins of the parents," he said.
Additional reporting by
David Hafts, Murray Weiss and Brad Hamilton
Judge's Dad Is Mobster
Career Criminal Will
Testify Against Alleged Mafia Cops
By John Marzulli
New York Daily News
May 12, 2005
imprisoned Luchese crime family associate who
suddenly agreed to turn into a stoolie has been
hiding another surprise: His daughter is a
Manhattan Criminal Court judge.
Kaplan, a career criminal doing 27 years behind
bars, will be the star witness against alleged
Mafia cops Louis Eppolito and Stephen Caracappa.
people know that his daughter is Deborah Kaplan, a
judge with an impeccable reputation as a jurist
and a lawyer.
say that not even her bosses made the connection
that Judge Kaplan was Burton Kaplan's daughter.
Kaplan was the Luchese crime family's go-between,
ferrying messages to and from the alleged Mafia
cops, charged with leaking confidential
information and taking part in at least eight
response to questions from the Daily News, Deborah
Kaplan suggested she knew nothing of her father's
alleged mob ties and his role in the case against
the alleged Mafia cops.
deeply saddened to learn of the conduct attributed
to my father," the judge said in a statement
issued by a state court spokesman yesterday. "This
is a painful time for me and my family and we ask
that our privacy be respected."
father's shady past shouldn't have been much of a
secret to the judge.
thing, former Luchese underboss Anthony (Gaspipe)
Casso attended her lavish wedding more than a
decade ago ata Long Island catering hall,
according to a knowledgeable source.
even testified as a defense witness at her
father's 1997 drug trial. Despite her testimony,
her father was convicted of dealing 48,000 pounds
Kaplan is in charge of drug treatment programs in
the state courts. A former Legal Aid lawyer who
was active in Democratic Party politics, she was
elected to a Civil Court judgeship in 2002 and
later reassigned to Criminal Court.
swearing-in was attended by several top state
judges, including Chief Administrative Judge
Jonathan Lippman, Appellate Division Justice Betty
Weinberg Ellerin and her longtime friend and
immediate boss, Manhattan Supreme Court Justice
Juanita Bing Newton.
who also is the administrative judge for the
city's Criminal Court, said Kaplan is "one of the
hardest working, honest, most diligent judges we
have. Her character is beyond reproach."
With Barbara Ross