By Monica Alonzo
By Stephen Lemons
By Jason P. Woodbury
By Dulce Paloma Baltazar Pedraza
By Ray Stern
By Pete Kotz
By Monica Alonzo
By New Times
Which was a lie. Symington was paid interest, or dividends, from the stocks, but under the terms of the trust, he can never sell them for their principal. Nor is he allowed to pledge them as collateral.
Symington lied when he listed the trust as a half-million dollars of readily marketable securities. He compounded the fraud when he proposed to satisfy Citicorp's loan conditions with the Mellon trust.
And under the terms of the $10.6 million loan to Symington, the governor sent a statement to Citicorp every three months demonstrating that his "readily marketable trust" was still worth more than $500,000.
Each of these quarterly statements was a fraud.
Dowd did not defend his client.
Instead, he put the banker on trial.
Dowd repeatedly attacked Thompson because the Citicorp executive had not personally contacted Mellon Bank to ask about the details of Symington's trust.
From Dowd's point of view, Thompson should have learned that Symington was a liar.
But Thompson was too dazzled with Symington's relatives to smell a thief; the banker literally gushed from the witness stand that, after all, the governor was a Maryland blue blood. In an eye-opening section of his report to his superiors, Thompson enthused that Symington's ancestors had run blockades for the Confederacy.
But the banker is not on trial. Thompson relied upon Symington to tell the truth about his trusts. The governor was required to do so by the law.
On June 21, 1990, the law firm representing Mellon Bank wrote to Fife Symington and pointedly warned the governor that his trust was not readily marketable and that the governor was not allowed to pledge the trust's assets.
Symington continued to send out quarterly statements to Citicorp pledging the trust as readily marketable.
And Joyce Riebel did her part to create an 18-minute gap in the record.
When paperwork surfaced with the names of the people who administered the Mellon Bank trusts, Riebel used White-Out to hide their identity, just in case Noel Thompson or some other lender got nosy.
Even aristocrats need loyal handmaidens.