Saturday, April 14, 2012

Pedro charged Puerto Rico junket to clinic credit card

Espada and family racked up $15G bill

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Pedro Espada Jr., seen with wife Connie, allegedly treated family members to an expensive junket in Puerto Rico

Jesse Ward/for New York Daily News

Pedro Espada Jr., with wife Connie, allegedly treated family members to an expensive junket in Puerto Rico.

A JUNKET at a posh hotel in Puerto Rico turned into a family affair for ex-State Sen. Pedro Espada, Jr., with his Bronx nonprofit clinic picking up the $15,000 tab.

Federal prosecutors produced credit card receipts showing Espada and family members staying in six rooms at the El San Juan Hotel and Casino over five days in November 2008.

Espada whipped out the corporate credit card issued by his Soundview health clinic for meals at the hotel’s La Terraza restaurant — breakfast one day was $17 smoked salmon and $15 eggs Benedict — charges from the minibar, pool bar and even an $8.40 bill at a Starbucks.

It is unclear who was in Espada’s group besides his wife; his mother; son, Alejandro; and daughter-in-law and at least one child as evidenced by the order of chicken fingers and a kids’ buffet.

Espada was attending a conference sponsored by a group called Somos El Futuro at the Intercontinental Hotel nextdoor.

But he crashed in one of the hotel’s top suites which featured two bedrooms and a living room for entertaining.

Espada’s income that year was over $700,000, but he still received a $1,500 perdiem payment for the junket from the health clinic’s cleaning company which he controlled.

Espada and son Pedro Gautier are charged with embezzling more than $500,000 from the federally funded clinic for personal expenses.

jmarzulli@nydailynews.com

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