Rosenberg & Dirty S&L’s: The Texas Networks.

 

  1. Rosenberg
  2. Cast Of Characters
  3. Rosenberg Chronology
  4. Saks & Spruil
  5. Connie “Chip” Armstrong
  6. Roberts And Hadid

Rosenberg

Stanley D Rosenberg sits on all of Hurwitz’ Corporate boards except Pacific Lumber and United Financial Group and has been a director of Maxxam or its predecessor corporations since 1981. He is known as an influential San Antonio, real estate attorney from the firm of Oppenheimer, Rosenberg, Kelleher and Wheatley. He is no longer a partner or stockholder in the firm having been replaced by William Sessions III. the son of fellow San Antonian, Judge William Sessions Jr, former Director of the FBI.

Charles Hurwitz moved to San Antonio prior to his move to Houston. The dates of his moves are uncertain but he apparently resided there from the late 60’s when he was running Hedge Fund as Hedge Fund was based in San Antonio.

Cast Of Characters

Lillian A Affinito, a director and officer in Hurwitz related entities. Also a director in K-Mart, a Dupont related corp.

Connie “Chip” Armstrong, a business associate of Stanley Rosenberg,John H Roberts Jr and Mohammed Hadid; a convicted felon. 

Tom Benson, a partner of Stanley Rosenberg in Groos Bank(influenced by H K Beebe) and Bank of Leon Springs; a Beebe associate; partner with Peyton McKnight and Charles Hurwitz(?) in Culebra/1676, a Rosenberg boondoggle

John Connally, former Texas governor; Connally’s law firm, Vinson-Elkins had Walter Mischer as a client; Charles Keating worked on his 1980 Republican presidential race; he and his partner Ben Barnes, borrowed tens of millions of dollars from dirty S&L’s; served on Hurwitz‘s Maxxam Inc’s board of directors from 1988 until his death in 1993. Participated in several CIA related covert actions.

H Frank Dominguez, a partner of David Saks and Doyle Spruil both convicted felons; S&L owner who attempted to defraud Bankruptcy court in the same manner as Armstrong, Hadid, Rosenberg and Roberts. Brewton refers to a Frank J Dominguez, a partner of Jack Bona. This Dominguez was associated with San Marino S&L and bought South Bay Savings from Bona. Frank J owed nearly a million to Vernon.

Manichur Gorbanifar, among other things Gorbanifar was used to funnel money to the Contras; a business associate of John H Roberts Jr.

Mohammed Hadid, a business associate of Connie Armstrong, John H Roberts Jr, Stanley Rosenberg, Adnan Khashoggi and Manichur Gorbanifar

Stefan Halper, co-founder with fellow George Bush supporter Harvey McLean of Palmer National Bank, which was financed by H K Beebe and funneled private donations to the Contras;former son-in-law of past CIA deputy director Ray Cline;helped set up legal defense fund for Oliver North.Peter Munk also an investor in Palmer NB

Raymond Hill, Houston attorney and scion of old,rich Houston family;owner of Mainland Savings,which lent money to Mafia associates and CIA operatives, also lent money to Rosenberg associates John H Roberts and Mohammed Hadid;did business with Walter Mischer,”his mentor”;close friend of James Baker III.

James M Holbrook,a business associate of John H Roberts Jr; a convicted felon, convicted of diverting funds from Summit Savings, which was owned by Roberts.

James P Holmes Jr,a business associate of John H Roberts Jr and John P Holmes Jr, both convicted felons, also a director of Hurwitz‘ related Integrated Energy Inc

Charles Hurwitz,controlled now defunct USAT, majority stockholder of Maxxam Inc; longtime friend of most Houston elite including John Connally; a Milken Insider; often accused of fraud and other security related schemes; knew H K Beebe.

Adnan Khashoggi,Saudi Arabian arms dealer,Iran-contra middleman and borrower at Raymond Hill’s Mainland Savings and Lamar Savings. A business associate of Mohammed Hadid and John H Roberts Jr

Ed McBirney,”Fast Eddie” from Dallas;former head of Sunbelt Savings;associate of H K Beebe, Jarrett Woods and George Aubin;attempted to buy branch offices from Hurwitz‘ USAT; funded Hurwitz associates including Rosenberg.

Peyton McKnight,powerful louisianan, an associate of Beebe and a partner with Charles Hurwitz, Stanley Rosenberg and Tom Benson in a Rosenberg deal.

Harvey McLean,Shreveport,Louisiana businessman and close associate of H K Beebe;owned Paris(Texas)Savings and Loan;co-founded Palmer National Bank with Stephan Halper and Beebe‘s money.

Peter Munk,a Canadian businessman, investor in Palmer NB; an associate of H K Beebe; business partner with Adnan Khashoggi; an associate of John H Roberts Jr and John P Holmes Jr in Goldome FSB

Clint Murchison Sr. and Jr.,Dallas oilmen and wheeler dealers;Sr was involved in business in Haiti with a CIA operative;Jr purchased Mischer’s interest in sawmills in Honduras;Jr was involved with a CIA operative in Libya and did business with  H K Beebe and Adnan Khashoggi.

John H Roberts Jr,San Antonio developer who owned Summit Savings in Dallas and Commerce Savings in San Antonio;associate of George Aubin, Jarrett Woods, Mohammed Hadid, Stanley Rosenberg, John P Holmes, Peter Munk and Adnan Khashoggi; convicted felon.

Stanley D Rosenberg, San Antonio lawyer, business partner of many indicted and convicted felons; partner in a law firm close to William Sessions Jr and III; a director of Hurwitz related entities

David Saks,business associate of Stanley Rosenberg; partner of Doyle Spruil, both convicted felons;borrowed from Beebe controlled S&L’s

Doyle Spruil, business partner of David Saks and Stanley Rosenberg; a convicted felon; borrowed from Beebe controlled S&L’s

Rosenberg Chronology

1971

Rosenberg was a founding partner in Rosenberg, Tuggey and Agather, San Antonio.

1981

(Jun)     He was elected to the Board of Directors of MCO Holdings

1982

(Aug)     Rosenberg, R Tom Roddy (a Banker, Louisianan and graduate from South Texas University which is LBJ’s alma mater) and Tom Benson (a New Orleans car dealer, now owner of the N.O. Saints and a known associate of Beebe)buy Groos Bank and its holding company Groos Bancshares from Oscar Wyatt of the Coastal Corp and John W Wright. Roddy became President and  Rosenberg, Chair. Groos Bancshares is renamed Groos Financial Corp. Groos Bank is located in San Antonio.

____      Groos Bank acquired Mercantile Bank and Trust and Commercial National Bank

____      Rosenberg sat on Central Park Bank, later acquired by First City Bancorp.

1983

Home Centers of America was founded by Michael Morton, Frank Denny, Rosenberg and Judd Walford. Hurwitz was touted as the architect of HCA and was credited with taking HCA public.

Records, perhaps incomplete, show that the shareholders in the initial stock distribution were

 

Name(position) Shares (1000s)
Phillip David(D) 259
Frank Denny(CB) 342
Michael Morton(O) 91
Frank Powers(O) 171
David Saks(O,D) 210
Judd Walford 114
Kent Fortner(O) 2

 

(D=director,CB=Chair,O=officer)

In 1984, in a deal described as “vintage Hurwitz”, HCA was acquired by K-Mart. Another set of stockholding records, perhaps incomplete and perhaps not fully reflecting the sale to K-Mart(which is to say that it is possible the following list reveals a fronting situation where stock is sold to interim buyers who will then full realize the premium from the buyout -a form of inside trade), show the new stockholders to have been

 

Name Shares (%)
John B Connally 30.2
Morton Davis 5.6
K-Mart 26.2
Barry Munitz 0.4
Rosenberg et al 24.6

 

(Who was “et al”?)

HCA was formed from Builders Design and Builders Express. Its founders Denny and Wolford joined K-Mart and Powers joined Office Stop and is now doing PR for Healthdyne.

____  Benson investment Corp holds Kelly Field NB, Exchange NB and Bankshares Life Insurance Group. Oppenheimer,             Rosenberg and Kelleher is Kelly Field’s law firm.

1987

Benson Financial Corp(BFC) merges with Benson Investment Co(BIC) and with Groos Financial Corp GFC) while acquiring 80% of San Pedro Bancorp (SPB).

1990

This year Rosenberg was forced out of his law firm and his stock in the firm was purchased by the other partners. This event was not publically revealed until the following year. At that time Rosenberg claimed he was forced out because his presence on the Maxxam board had made him the target of numerous lawsuits. This may be true but research has not found any such suits. More likely other events in 1990 were the cause.

This year a number of Rosenberg’s real estate deals entered Chapter 11 including

MRD Joint Venture: This was 400 acres in the Belvedere Rd area of San Antonio. MRD may have stood for Morton(?), Rosenberg and Denton. Its principals were Rosenberg (a partner and minority owner), Bruce and Bernice Denton, Wulfe Investments and Harold Cooper MD (Maxxam director).

Culebra/1686 Ltd: This was based in Rosenberg’s law firm and comprised 1686 acres in Bexar and Medena Counties, Texas. A note from San Antonio S&L was signed by Wulfe, Denton, Benson and a “Charles Horowitz” according to media accounts. Rosenberg was the General Partner and a minority owner. “Charles Horowitz” is interesting because no such person was found in research but the Houston Post in discussing the Maxxam offer for Continental referred to Hurwitz as Horowitz.

The unsecured creditors in Culebra included The Aykroyd & Simons Interest, Peyton McKnight Joint Venture, Concord Oil Co, First Gibraltar FSB as receiver for San Antonio SA, Laredo NB, Saratoga Land Co and Wulfe Investments.

Aykroyd & Simons was Geoffrey B Aykroyd and Weland Simons. McKnight is a Beebe associate.

Kan-Mart Inc: This had the same address as Rosenberg’s firm and with Rosenberg the partners were Kenneth Gindy and Raymond Sneider both of Oppenheimer, Rosenberg and Kelleher. Its assets included the Danberry Square Apartments.

Danberry Square Apartments: This was financed by  Sunbelt Savings associated with Beebe and John H Roberts Jr.

River City Fair Inc: This was a restaurant and entertainment complex built in 1989 and funded by First City NB Houston. Its principals were Connie “Chip” Armstrong* (49%), Rosenberg (25.5%) and Charles Barrett Jr. (25.5% and Secretary).

*Connie “Chip” Armstrong was convicted for fraud in the bankruptcy of Hamilton Taft but not before he tried to funnel money to his friends so as to keep the funds from the bankruptcy courts. These friends were Rosenberg, John H Roberts Jr and Mohammed Hadid.

Rosenberg had other enterprises as well including

Cash America International: In the mid-80% two pawn shops were purchased and named Express Pawn Shops with           Rosenberg (4% common, 95% Pfd with 30 to 1 voting rights, limited partner), Charles Barrett (51% common), David Saks and Doyle Spruil*. This was renamed Express Cash, the Express Cash International and then merged with a American Express spin-off, Cash America International, where the principals became Rosenberg (36% common, 95% Pfd), Barrett (36%) and Ronald Shaw of the law firm Bailey and Shaw. The funding came from Commonwealth SA.

*Saks and Spruil were indicted and convicted in another deal for defrauding Security SA of Texarcana. Security had loaned money to Saks and Spruil in buying some Corpus Christie land. Three officers and directors of        Security were also indicted and convicted for fraud in the deal.

Office Products of America: This was a Frank Denny (Chair) start-up but Denny and Rosenberg were sued regarding “conceptual theft”. This suit was reported as if Rosenberg had lied about his involvement and then was forced to tell the truth.

1993

Groos Bank is cited for excessive insider loans.

Rosenberg sold his interests in Bank of Leon Springs. He had purchased BLS in 1987 and in 1993 sold it back to its prior owner and founder, Richard Lane. Investors with Rosenberg included Tom Benson. BLS had been failing from 1990-1993 after having been previously solvent.

  1. Saks & Spruil

David Saks is a San Antonian, who was a shareholder in Hurwitz’ and Rosenberg’s Home Centers of America, and with Doyle Spruil was a partner with Rosenberg, and others, in the pawnshop business, Express Pawn. Saks and Spruil were convicted of fraud along with three officers and directors of Security Savings in a Corpus Christie land deal. Of the two, Saks is the better known but they were partners in many of Saks deals throughout the 80’s.

1976

A ” David Saks” was a DBL analyst

1981

David Saks and his son, Ken, survived an auto accident that killed the older Saks’ wife and daughter. He drove his Jaguar off a pier into a lake.

1983-1988

Most, if not all the following deals occurred between 1983 and 1988. Most, if not all ended in chapter 11.

Vista Verde Hotel: Financed, in 1985, and foreclosed,in 1989, by So. Calif Savings of Beverly Hills, a H K Beebe controlled bank.

One partner is San Diegan, H Frank Dominguez who owned  Marathon NB, which financed some of Dominguez’ developments. Dominguez’ operations went under the name Vanir Group with its subs Vanir Development, Vanir Research, Vanir Tower. In 1989 Dominguez was accused by the California Federal Bankruptcy Court of shuffling his assets following his business failure due to dishonest and gross mismanagement.

 

Vista Verde entered Ch 11 in 1988 after developing Fiesta Plaza Mall, a Ramada Inn and the Control Data Building. Funding for the Fiesta Plaza came from an S&L, Commerce Savings and Loan, controlled by Rosenberg business partner John H Roberts Jr.

 

The partners in Vista Verde were called Omni/Vanir Vista Verde South Joint Venture. The principals in Omni Interests Inc borrowed $19.3 million in 1985 from Meridian SA, Security SA and Peoples SLA .(Peoples, located in Llano,Texas was described, in a Houston Post article by Pete Brewton, as making loans to known drug smugglers introduced to the bank’s officers by friends of Reagan. Peoples failed in 1988.)

Omni Tower: Later renamed Victoria Tower its original funding was provided by Gill Savings and later bought by Rosenberg’s Groos Bank.

Corpus Christie: a land deal with loans from Security SA. Ray Stockman, a silent partner of Saks and Spruil, funnelled $5 million to cover the Corpus Christie loan before default by borrowing from Security. Stockman had other non-performing loans at Security and the officers and directors that were indicted for fraud with Saks and Spruil knew this payment was fraudulently acquired. Thus the indictments.

Alta Vista Joint Venture: The partners in this deal included Don Prado and Roland Castenada.CCA

  1. Connie “Chip” Armstrong

Connie “Chip” Armstrong, son of Neal, brother of Robert (owner of Coffee International, shopping centers) and a one-time rodeo star, gained control of Hamilton Taft from Max Pharma Corp. His prior business name was Rodeo Partners. Concurrent to owning, HT he controlled Knightsbridge, Remington Companies, its sub Carbon Clean, Dresdner Petroleum and Winthrop Real Estate.

Armstrong’s partner in HT was Mohammed Hadid. Armstrong had been a business partner with Rosenberg and others in River City Fair.

Hamilton Taft, based in San Francisco, was the largest processor of payrolls in the US. During the late 80’s it failed to be able to meet the payrolls for which it had already received the funds to pay. Some estimates say Armstrong diverted over $100 million in his customers’ payments to his other corporations. HT was forced into Chapter 11. As the Bankruptcy Court was taking control of HT, Armstrong distributed funds to Hadid, Rosenberg and a partner of both in other business deals, John H Roberts Jr. The court sued Hadid, Rosenberg and Roberts to recover the $14 million Armstrong had diverted to them. Armstrong was convicted and sentenced to 5 years.

  1. Roberts and Hadid

John H Roberts Jr was a partner with Mohammed Hadid; Hadid an associate of Ritz-Carlton as was Hurwitz.

Roberts owned 100% of Summit Savings, San Antonio, and controlled Commerce Savings Association through American Century Corp (ACT) of which Roberts owned 53%.

In 1988, James M Holbrook, a close associate of Roberts took $37 million from a customers account at Summit to pay for Roberts’ Lear Jet. Holbrook was charged, pled guilty and was sentenced to five years. Roberts was convicted in 1991 of bank fraud for using a nominee for insider loans. He was fined some $766,000 and given a 5 year sentence.

Roberts control of ACT goes back at least to 1983, when Sunbelt Bancorp bought 9.7% of ACT from Roberts.  Sunbelt Bancorp was controlled Ed McBirney, Bonham SLA and Texoma SA (both Beebe controlled) and Robert E Williams (20%). Sunbelt Bancorp was the parent of Sunbelt Savings whose sub Sunbelt Service Corp also held 9.7% of Texas Federal Finance Corp (Dallas) with its Sub Texas Federal SA. Sunbelt, trying to buy Commerce from ACT, was blocked by the FHLBB warning of an “illegal purchase.”

Roberts and ACT bought a combined holding of 14% of First American Financial Calif, a title insurance company, at the same time (August 1982) as Hurwitz also bought shares of FAF Calif and FDC-FRC-MCOH was buying FAF Tx for the merger with UFG.

In 1984, ACT bought Roberts out with a trade of land for his shares.

Roberts other associates included Jarrett Woods of Western Savings (lent Roberts $7.9 million for 2 parcels of land) and George Aubin, both Beebe associates. Roberts bought Commerce SA from Jarrett Woods and Woods’ brother-in-law Thomas Perry. Ed McBirney of Sunbelt and Aubin split the commission on the sale.

Roberts was also a business associate of Adnan Khashoggi. Roberts and Khashoggi bought a piece of property jointly in Aspen, Col. Roberts borrowed from his Commerce SA and Khashoggi gave Roberts additional funds for the purchase which Khashoggi borrowed from San Jacinto S&L. Roberts’ Summit Savings funded Khashoggi in a San Antonio development called the Galaria (the largest mall in the world). This funding provided $5 million more than was needed and it was this $5 million which partially funded the Iran-Contra deal that involved Ghorbanifar.

Another Roberts’ associate was Mohammed Hadid who was a partner in Real Estate Sales of Aspen.

In 1988, Hadid bailed out Roberts when Hadid bought a piece of land in Aspen that was in default since Roberts could not pay the loan to Commerce SA. Hadid financed the buyout through another of Roberts’ lenders- Mainland SA Houston, another dirty S&L.

Hadid was a Washington DC based developer, who along with Roberts and Rosenberg, was involved in Connie “Chip” Armstrong’s attempt to defraud the bankruptcy court in the failure of Hamilton Taft.

Of interest is the fact that in 1987 Hadid’s pilot is Jack E Henson who had been Sheik Salom bin Laden’s chief pilot.

In 1990, Signet Bank seized Hadid’s assets to cover a default on an office building in Baltimore.

In 1985 Goldome National Corp was sold by its parent, Goldome FSB, to Transamerica Partners. Transamerica was controlled by Roberts; a New York investment banker, John P Holmes; and a Canadian businessman, Peter Munk of Barrick Resources, Toronto.

John P Holmes Jr was a director of Integrated Energy Inc in 1981 and his father a director of Federated Department Stores. Both entities were important to Hurwitz at the beginning of the 80’s.

Integrated was merged into MCO Resources in 1984 after two year’s of stock accumulation by Hurwitz entities. Federated was the largest renter of space at Hurwitz’ malls and FDC’s largest debtor during the same period.

Holmes and Holbrook were directors of Christiana Cos, a residential developer in Ca, Ne, Az, Ill, Tx and Ga, controlled by Roberts who was its CEO. Holmes owned 25% of Transamerica Partners with Roberts owning 50% and Munk and Barrick Ltd holding the remaining 25%.

Peter Munk was a Real Estate entrepreneur who had business dealings with Khashoggi dating back to at least 1978 when Munk was chair of Southern Pacific Properties Ltd, Australia, and Khashoggi’s Triad Corp was a major shareholder along with canadian David Gilmour. Munk is said to have been an investor in the Contra-related, Beebe-funded Palmer NB in the mid-80’s.