– Attorney General Anne Milgram announced
that a suspended employee of the state Division
of Consumer Affairs was sentenced today
for advising a consumer who called him at
his state office to file a lawsuit through
the firm where his wife worked.
Biederman, 75, of Cliffside Park, was ordered
by Superior Court Judge Michael A. Petrolle
in Essex County to forfeit his public employment
and was banned from future public employment.
Biederman was also ordered to serve three
years probation and complete 100 hours of
community service. The sentence was pursuant
to Biederman’s Aug. 12 guilty plea
to unlawful official business transaction
where interest is involved.
is a violation of the state ethics code
and New Jersey law for state employees to
act in their official capacity in a way
that involves doing business with or conferring
benefits on themselves, their immediate
family or a business in which the employee
or immediate family has an interest.
was hired in April 2003 to work in the Speaker’s
Bureau of the Division of Consumer Affairs
as a Consumer Education Coordinator. In
2005, Biederman received a call from a man
who had a complaint about a contractor performing
renovations at his home. Biederman admitted
that he advised the man that he should contact
his wife, Lita Biederman, at a law firm
in Palisades Park in order to file a lawsuit.
Lita Biederman was an independent contractor
who provided paralegal services to the firm
under an agreement where she would receive
$200 per week plus 50 percent of the revenues
generated by any case she handled. The firm
filed suit for the man in September 2005
seeking at least $150,000 in damages.
the partner handling the case retired in
2006, he (Biederman) arranged for the client
to transfer the case to a Jersey City law
firm where his wife also worked and received
a share of the legal fees for her cases.
An investigation determined that David Biederman
performed work on the case while it was
with both law firms. Biederman negotiated
an agreement with the second law firm regarding
the portion of monies that would be awarded
from the lawsuit to him and his wife, and
he continued to assist in the civil litigation,
including reviewing court documents and
preparing the complainant for trial.
investigation was conducted and coordinated
by Deputy Attorney General Pearl Minato
and Detective Harry Maronpot Jr. of the
Division of Criminal Justice - Corruption
Bureau. Minato represented the Division
of Criminal Justice at the sentencing.
was suspended without pay from his job at
the Division of Consumer Affairs on March
12, 2007, after his conduct was uncovered.