The Working Families Party has been served with subpoenas seeking a broad range of documents. Avi Schick of SNR Denton, counsel for the party, confirmed yesterday that it has received two subpoenas from special prosecutor Roger Bennett Adler, who was appointed last year after Staten Island District Attorney Daniel Donovan Jr. asked to be relieved.
One of the subpoenas seeks extensive data related to a not-for-profit arm of the party, Data and Field Services, and other groups and individuals. Another demands minutes of all party board meetings in 2008, 2009 and 2010 in which expenditures to Data and Field, the law firm of Kantor, Davidoff, Wolfe, Mandelker, Twomey & Gallanty and others were authorized.
The party was previously accused in a civil action of using Data and Field to assist Democrats in the 2009 City Council election. In 2011, the party settled a civil lawsuit alleging it unfairly assisted Deborah Rose, D-Staten Island, and other candidates. It is unclear if the criminal investigation involves the same matter.
Meanwhile, Schick is seeking to have unsealed Donovan’s 2010 application to be relieved and the 2012 order relieving him and appointing Adler. Schick argued in a letter last week that he cannot challenge Donovan’s application to be relieved because he has no way of knowing the reasons for the district attorney’s request.
David Bookstaver, a court spokesman, said the party was previously advised to either make a motion or submit a request under the Freedom of Information Law and "to the best of our knowledge, they have not done either." Douglas Auer, a spokesman for Donovan, declined to comment. Adler was not immediately available for comment.