There’s no doubt about it; John Holmes was big. He made over 2,000 films during his career and, aided in no small way by his prodigious appendage (the exact stature of which, Cherwell cannot divulge) became porn’s first superstar during the industry’s seventies heyday. Not bad for a skinny guy from Ohio, with a crap moustache and a dodgy lung. Predictably, though, this fame was fleeting, and the beginning of the eighties found him washed up. An impressive pharmaceutical intake took its toll and, as past, present and future disappeared up his nose, Holmes became increasingly reliant on the wrong kind of people. James Cox’s film takes up the story of his life here, in 1981, eschewing the dubious past glories to focus instead on the one-time king of the adult movie world’s involvement in the brutal murders of four people at a house on Wonderland Avenue. His precise role in the slayings never came to light; whether an active participant or an unlucky dupe, Holmes was acquitted, and never revealed the truth. As such, Wonderland employs a Rashomon-esque approach, exploring the various possibilities by taking separate looks at conflicting versions of the story, all with the flashy editing and grungy hues seemingly obligatory for any film depicting drug-fuelled depravity. It’s not so much gritty as soiled, the world inhabited by the burntout skin flick star revealed in all its scuzzy glory, and though we do occasionally see a more human side to the man – the strange triangle formed by him, his wife and his much younger girlfriend is one of the most interesting, if underdeveloped, parts of the story – this comes second to his portrayal as a cowardly, desperate fuck-up. Wonderland relies to a great extent on Val Kilmer’s performance, imbuing his seemingly worthless character with enough faded charm to suggest that there may be varying levels of truth. The real John Holmes was a mass of contradictions – a vociferous campaigner for mandatory AIDS testing in his industry, he nevertheless continued to make films despite learning he had the disease – so perhaps it’s only right that here we are left with questions rather than answers, both about events on Wonderland Avenue and the nature of the man himself. Naïve victim or craven manipulator, it’s difficult to know, and though this lack of conclusion does leave an empty feeling, it seems in keeping with the subject that all should remain largely mysterious.ARCHIVE: 2nd week TT 2004
By Gustavo Arias Retana/Diálogo November 18, 2020 The Colombian Office of the Attorney General seized assets valued at $9.8 million from Alex Saab, a Colombian businessman and Nicolás Maduro’s front man, CNN reported on October 17, 2020. Authorities seized two properties in Barranquilla and Cartagena and three companies that Saab used for money laundering, the report says.“Apparently [the companies] were used to launder money from a criminal organization, since it became clear that they were likely created as a front by people close to Alex Saab, since they had no financial or patrimonial means; and even so, they increased their assets disproportionately,” the Colombian Office of the Attorney General reported via Twitter on October 16, stating: “#AttorneyGeneral conducts investigation against Alex Naim Saab Morán for alleged money laundering, illicit enrichment, fictitious export or import, and conspiracy to commit a crime.”Saab and Maduro’s relationship is directly linked to the food boxes of the Local Supply and Production Committees (CLAP, in Spanish). The CLAP program distributes food boxes that are sold to Venezuelans who are registered in Chavista committees. Beneficiaries cannot choose the staples, as the food is prepared in advance, nor can they decide when to access them.Venezuelan lawyer Mariano de Alba, who specializes in law and international relations, told Diálogo from the United States that the Chavismo system used the aid to conduct overpriced business practices and money laundering. Saab was one of the main businessmen involved in this corruption scheme.“A good part of the system of food imports [to Venezuela] has become a mafia scheme. It all starts when the food import contracts are given to people who are close to the government, and they sell the food at elevated prices, obtaining a financial return for their loyalty,” De Alba said. “But it doesn’t end there. When the food finally arrives in Venezuela, the scheme includes determining where to distribute that food, based on the area and its people’s political affinity with the government, as well as bribes to public officials and the military to mobilize or deliver the food.”Other seizuresThe Colombian newspaper El Tiempo reported on September 14 that U.S. authorities froze about $700 million from Saab’s accounts located in the European Principality of Liechtenstein. The U.S. Department of the Treasury has sanctioned Saab in July 2019, and the Department of Justice has been investigating him for money laundering since that same month.Saab has been detained in the African Republic of Cape Verde since June 12. He was arrested due to an Interpol Red Notice. At the end of that month, the United States requested the Colombian national’s extradition to prosecute him. However, the process has been delayed, and Saab remains on the small island.De Alba explained that Saab’s ties with Chavismo are evident in more than the CLAP, as the businessman became a very important figure for Maduro’s shady business dealings.“There are indications that Saab was not only the regime’s main financial operator, but also Maduro’s personal front man, who used him as a direct vehicle to embezzle funds, with Saab having to give Maduro a share of the surcharge that he charged the Venezuelan state. The relationship is so intimate that when Saab was arrested, the Venezuelan government, surprisingly, without ever having said so, attempted to argue [immunity] because he was a diplomatic representative of the Venezuelan state,” he concluded.
Notice Garel seeks Florida Bar readmission Arthur M. Garel of Miami has petitioned the Florida Board of Bar Examiners for Bar readmission.Garel resigned from the practice of law in Florida pursuant to a January 1995, Supreme Court order under allegations of trust account violations.The Florida Board of Bar Examiners will conduct a public hearing on Garel’s application for readmission and all Bar members are invited to write to the board regarding their knowledge of Garel, particularly in relation to his character and fitness for readmission.If you wish to be notified of the time and place of the hearing, submit a written request to Eleanor Mitchell Hunter, Executive Director, Florida Board of Bar Examiners, 1891 Eider Court, Tallahassee 32399-1750. R osenthal petitions for reinstatement Pursuant to Rule 3-7.10, Joel N. Rosenthal has petitioned the Florida Supreme Court for Bar reinstatement from a rehabilitative suspension.Rosenthal’s suspension was effective December 16, 1999, and was for a period of three years resulting from a felony conviction.Any persons having knowledge bearing upon Rosenthal’s fitness or qualifications to resume the practice of law should contact Barnaby Lee Min, Bar Counsel, The Florida Bar, Suite M-100, 444 Brickell Avenue, Miami 33131, telephone (305) 377-4445. Franjola petitions for reinstatement Pursuant to Rule 3-7.10, George Franjola has petitioned the Florida Supreme Court for Bar reinstatement.Franjola’s suspension was effective August 24, 1998, and was for a period of three years resulting from a felony conviction for possession of cocaine.Any persons having knowledge bearing upon Franjola’s fitness or qualifications to resume the practice of law should contact Jan K. Wichrowski, Chief Branch Disciplinary Counsel, The Florida Bar, 1200 Edgewater Dr., Orlando 32804-6314, phone (407) 425-5424. Comments sought on Judge Bodiford The current term of the office of part-time U.S. Magistrate Larry A. Bodiford is due to expire September 23. The U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Florida is required by law to establish a panel of citizens to consider the reappointment of the magistrate judge to a new four-year term.The duties of the magistrate judge position include the following: conduct of most preliminary proceedings in criminal cases; trial and disposition of misdemeanor cases; conduct of various pretrial matters and evidentiary hearings on delegation from the judges of the district court; and conduct of final hearings for naturalization and admission of attorneys.Comments from members of the Bar and the public are invited as to whether the incumbent magistrate judge should be recommended by the panel for reappointment by the court and should be directed to: William M. McCool, Clerk, U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Florida, 111 N. Adams St., Tallahassee 32301. Comments must be received by March 31. 11th JNC seeks judicial applicants The 11th Circuit JNC is now accepting applications to fill a vacancy on the circuit bench created by the elevation of Judge Richard J. Suarez to the Third DCA.Applicants must be registered voters, members of the Bar for the preceding five years, and reside in the 11th Circuit upon assuming office.Applications may be obtained from JNC Co-chairs Gerald I. Kornreich or Manuel Kadre at the Law Offices of Kornreich and Terraferma, Bank of America Tower, Suite #3950, 100 Southeast Second Street, Miami 33131or the Bar’s Web site at www.flabar.org.An original plus 10 copies of the completed application must be received by Kornreich or Kadre no later than 5 p.m. January 17. Those who have previously submitted applications to the commission must submit new applications. 11th JNC seeks judicial applicants The 11th Circuit JNC is now accepting applications to fill a vacancy on the circuit bench created by the resignation of Judge Alex E. Ferrer.Applicants must be registered voters, members of the Bar for the preceding five years, and reside in the 11th Circuit upon assuming office.Applications may be obtained from JNC Co-chairs Gerald I. Kornreich or Manuel Kadre at the Law Offices of Kornreich and Terraferma, Bank of America Tower, Suite #3950, 100 Southeast Second Street, Miami 33131or the Bar’s Web site at www.flabar.org.An original plus 10 copies of the completed application must be received by Kornreich or Kadre no later than 5 p.m. January 19. Those who have previously submitted applications to the commission must submit new applications. Spittler petitions for reinstatement Pursuant to Rule 3-7.10, John Joseph Spittler, Jr., has petitioned the Florida Supreme Court for Bar reinstatement from a rehabilitative suspension.Spittler’s suspension was effective July 17, 2001, and was for a period of nine months resulting from misconduct in the filing of improper bankruptcy schedules and transfer of property.Any persons having knowledge bearing upon Spittler’s fitness or qualifications to resume the practice of law should contact Carlos A. Leon, Bar Counsel, The Florida Bar, Suite M-100, 444 Brickell Avenue, Miami 33131, telephone (305) 377-4445. January 15, 2005 Notices January 15, 2005 Notices
Sign up for our COVID-19 newsletter to stay up-to-date on the latest coronavirus news throughout New York Now that 2012 firmly in the rear view, it’s high time for a little New Year’s retrospection to see what readers love most about us.These are the top 10 most-read Press stories from last year, as voted by readers, based on the best metric known to journalism—the number of clicks each story got on our website over the past 12 months.Some are predictable. Others make you wonder. Add them all up and it’s a list that reveals much about our readership’s interests and offers a trip down news memory lane.10. LI Doctors Among 98 Arrested in Drug Raid: Long Island’s deadly prescription drug abuse epidemic continued to spiral out of control last year as authorities cracked down on dealers and the physicians accused of supplying them with black market pain pills. And still they’ve just scratched the surface.9. Septic County: Remember how Suffolk County is slowly poisoning its own drinking and surface waters through its septic systems because most of the county lacks sewers? Yea, that’s still a monumental problem.8. 100 Sickened, 1 Arrested at Nassau Coliseum: Right before Sandy, 100 intoxicated teens were hospitalized during a rave at the coliseum. And a helicopter pilot was arrested for landing near the chaotic scene for some reason. Unconfirmed rumors of up to seven people dying are likely what made this story so popular.7. Amityville Horror: Second Gun Found? It’s been nearly 40 years since Ronald DeFeo murdered his family, but one filmmaker is among those who believe he didn’t act alone. The new evidence? A handle of a handgun found in the canal behind the house last year.6. 4 LI High Schools Among Top 100 in US: It seems readers like good news, too. This one came when U.S. News & World Report ranked high schools in Rockville Centre, Jericho, Commack and Locust Valley among the nation’s best.5. Paper Tiger: Newsday, once a flagship daily, has become a shell of its former after being bought by monopolistic Cablevision, the horrific cable company everyone hates. Its staff revealed to us the depth of their despair over the changes since the takeover.4. Suffolk Authorities Dispel Serial Killer Suspect Rumors: Armchair detectives solved the Long Island Serial Killer case and broadcast their suspect’s name on the Internet. Except it turns out they were wrong, anyone can post anything to the Internet regardless of validity and the real detectives had to take the rare move to publicly stamp out false rumors.3. Identifying Princess Doe: Thirty years after a teenage girl believed to be from Long Island was found dead of a brutal murder in a New Jersey cemetery, investigators continue their quest for justice for the unidentified victim.2. Ripple Effect: While Suffolk has leaching septic tanks poisoning the aquifers that our drinking water comes from, residents of Bethpage and surrounding areas have carcinogenic toxic plumes from the region’s military industrial past to thank for death from the faucets.1. Sandy: Anyone really surprised that the storm of the century topped this list? Although the homepage for all our coverage was most-clicked, if we listed every Sandy story separately, it would have taken up most of the top 10.