Three officers of the Federation of Kosher Butchers, indicted by the Queens Grand Jury July 18 on racketeering charges, were arraigned in Queens Special Sessions Court in Jamaica yesterday and released on $1,000 bail. The date of the trials was set for September 13.
Philip Kipnitz and David Schatz, organizers for the Federation, were arrested yesterday morning by Detectives James O’Brien, Arthur Schultheiss and William Justy of the Attorney General’s office.
Charles Cohen, president of the Federation, was arrested Tuesday and, after a night in jail, was bailed out on Wednesday by his attorney, David S. Andron.
Arraignment was before Special Session Justices Solomon, Grosser and Cauldwell, the latter presiding. A Queens Assistant District Attorney represented the state, and Andron, the defendants.
The indictment and arrests came as a result of an investigation by Bernard Bienstock, Assistant State Attorney General attached to the Anti-Racket Bureau and Queens Assistant District Attorney, Charles Sullivan.
The Federation of Kosher Butchers, Bienstock claimed, dictated to its members the prices to be charged for meats, which were considerably higher than those charged by non-members.
Threats of violence and damage to property were employed, Bienstock said, to coerce non-members to join. Failing this, the Federation opened stores in proximity to non-members to drive them out of business by underselling them, Bienstock said.
Andron, speaking for the defendants, issued a denial of all the charges.