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August 1998 Vol. 13, No. 8   RSS Feed for Undercurrent Issues
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Hiding in the Maldives

from the August, 1998 issue of Undercurrent   Subscribe Now

David Friedland, 59, an ex-New Jersey State Senator, was set free after ten years in prison. Why should we care? Well, we wrote about him in the mid-eighties, after Friedland embezzled $1.2 million in Teamster pension funds. When an indictment was imminent, he faked his death in a Bahamas diving accident, then got himself to the remote Maldives Islands deep in the Indian Ocean. There he hung out with his girlfriend and became a popular dive guide until Interpol nabbed him. "It would play better to say I had a miserable time, but that isn't true," he said. "It was fun." While a legislator, he introduced a bill that would have put the Statue of Liberty on a swivel so it could be turned around, because "the people of Jersey City should not have to stare at Lady Liberty's backside all the time." Who says diving doesn't cause brain damage?

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