Sen. Ruben Diaz Sr., D-Bronx, put out a statement on the arrest today of the financial manager of the non-profit he founded in the Bronx.
Clement Gardner was arrested today on embezzlement charges. In court, prosecutors alleged that Gardner took more than $400,000 from the organization for his own use. Gardner pleaded not guilty and was kept in jail until a bail hearing Thursday.
Diaz said he would withhold judgment as the case proceeds, but “For now, my dear reader, you will have to wait for the results, but I assure you that if I ever lose my salvation, it will not be for taking money because I am in the business of giving not in the business of taking.”
Here’s his full statement:
If you don’t know by now, you should know that one of my former staff and close ally, Clement Gardner, was arrested after being indicted by New York State Attorney General Eric Schneiderman.
Mr. Gardner served as the fiscal officer of the Christian Community Benevolent Association (CCBA), an organization that I founded in 1977 and proudly ran for 25 years helping to create jobs, housing and opportunities for needy people in the South Bronx.
Mr. Gardner was charged with embezzling $75,000 from the CCBA, bringing shame to one of the best Bronx not-for profit organizations that ever existed.
“Que sera que sera?” is the question that everyone will be asking.
“Is the fourth member of the Four Amigos involved in this?”
“Is the friend of Pedro Espada, Hiram Monserrate, and Carl Kruger a part of this?”
“Is he guilty by association?”
For now, my dear reader, you will have to wait for the results, but I assure you that if I ever lose my salvation, it will not be for taking money because I am in the business of giving not in the business of taking.
I am Senator Rev. Rubén Díaz and this is what you should know – for now.