United States. Congress. Senate. Select Committee.

Investigation of improper activities in the labor or management field. Hearings before the Select Committee on Improper Activities in the Labor or Management Field (Volume pt. 54) online

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Mr. Burris. Who did I meet with where ?

Mr. KIennedy. In Miami ?

Mr. Allder. I think he has answered the question.

Mr. Burris. You know the principals and we met down there.

Mr. Kennedy. You met with Mr. Dranow ?

Mr. Burris. Yes, sir.

Mr. Kennedy. And Mr. Triscaro ?

Mr. Burris. Mr. Triscaro was not present most of the time, and he
was interested in something else.

Mr. Kennedy. What was he interested in ?


IVIr, BuRRis. I think Mr. Kocky Marciano was there; he was down
there at the time. He was a friend of his.

Mr. Kennedy, Was he present in any of these discussions ?

Mr. BuRRis. Mr. Marciano — no.

Mr. Kennedy, Mr. Triscaro ?

Mr. BuRRis, Yes, he came over, but he wasn't an active participant,

Mr, Kennedy, What was it decided that you would do at that time ?

Mr, BuRRis. I didn't decide anything. Mr, Dranow did some

Mr, Kennedy, What was it decided that would be done then ?

Mr. BuRRis, It was decided that Mr. Dranow would look into the

Mr. Kennedy. Was there an agreement made at that time ?

Mr, BuRRis, Yes; it was a Saturday morning and I drew a very
one-sided agreement, giving Mr. Dranow the opportunity to look
into the matter.

Mr. Kennedy. Does Mr. Dranow's name appear in the document?

Mr. BuRRis. No ; I took it as nominee for Mr. Dranow.

Mr. Kennedy. So his name doesn't appear, and it appears that you
are the one who has the company ?

Mr. BuRRis. That is right.

The Chairman. I present to you what purports to be a photostatic
copy of a letter dated February 14, 1959, addressed to Alvin A. Nai-
man, and apparently signed by you. It is apparently signed by you
and witnessed by Triscaro.

I ask you to examine this and state if this is what you referred to as
the one-sided agreement which you drew up,

(The document was handed to the witness,)

Mr. BuRRis. That is the agreement ; the only one.

The Chairman, It may be made exhibit No. 26.

(Document referred to was marked "Exhibit No. 26" for reference,
and may be found in the files of the select committee. )

Mr. BuRRis. That agreement, as I recall, specifically sets forth the
situation, and I think specifically states that this is only for an op-
portunity for Mr. Dranow to look into this, but while looking into it
he was to have control of the corporation.

The Chairman. He would control the corporation ?

Mr. BuRRis. Well, if he was looking into it, and he could accomplish
something, he would have to have control of the situation.

The Chairman. I don't understand. He is undertaking to purchase
something, is he ?

Mr, BuRRis, That is right.

The Chairman, Purchase another corporation ; is that right ? This
is to purchase another corporation ?

Mr. BuRRis. This is to purchase the stock of another corporation if
he wanted to spend money and time to go into this proposition.

The Chairman. In the meantime, pending his trying to determine
or pending his consideration and investigation and so forth, the stock
of the other corporation was turned over to him, the one he was going
to buy, and he takes complete control of it. Is that right?

Mr. BuRRis, He had the right to, and it was supposed to be turned
over and I don't believe it was.


The Chairman. It was supposed to be turned over to him and he
was to manage it and run it and operate it and so on while he was
makino; up his mind ; is that correct ?

Mr. BuRRis. I drew this agreement to protect him in those respect.

The Chairman. You said you drew it as a one-sided agreement, and
I am inclined to agree with you, and that is what I was trying to get at ;
it is a little bit unusual that a man, while considering buying some-
thing, takes complete charge of it before he decides.

Mr. Kennedy. I would like to ask Mr. May to give the highlights
of the agreement, Mr. Chairman.

The Chairman. Have you been previously sworn ?

Mr. May. Yes, sir.

The Chairman. All right, you may sit right there, and speak into
the microphone so it can be heard.


Mr. May. This agreement reflects that in consideration

The Chairman. I wish you would observe if any erroneous state-
ment or inaccurate statement is made. I want you to follow it for

Mr. May. This agreement reflects that in consideration of $1 and
other valuable considerations, it is agreed that Herbert L. Burris
shall be held hai-mless, that Mr. Naiman hereby sells all of the out-
standing capital stock of Akros to Mr. Burris as nominee, and agrees
to deliver certificates of stock signed in blank, and the resignations of
all officers and directors of Akros, together with the corporate outfit,
together with the records and files of Akros; that all certificates of
stock in the Akros Dynamics Corp. shall be delivered free and clear;
that Mr. Naiman includes in this sale any and all properties pur-
chased or acquired by himself or his associates.

In return for the above sale, Mr. Naiman, according to the
agreement, received the following, and I quote :

In the event the undersigned principals receive a profit on the sale, lease, or
disposal of said airplanes, parts and equipment, Alvin A. Naiman shall receive
15 percent of the net profits therefrom.


Mr. Burris. May I cause the preceding paragraph to be read,
which contains the gist of this agreement ?
The Chairman. You may read it.
Mr. Burris (reading).

The undersigned, on behalf of his principals, agrees to endeavor to take
vphatever steps he believes necessary in his sole discretion to salvage the basic
concept of the purchase of these airplanes and parts and to turn this desperate
situation into a profitable one, expending as little or as much time and money
as the undersigned solely deems advisable.

The undersigned makes no further representations to Alvin A. Naiman what-
soever, nor does the undersigned obligate himself (as principals) whatsoever
to expend any moneys except the .$1 required to purchase the said capital stock.
In the event the undersigned, after looking further into this matter, believes that
Alvin A. Naiman, the Akros Dynamics Corp., got into a hopeless situation, the
undersigned at any time may tender the return of the stock certificates,

and so forth.


and the undersigned and his principals shall be held,
et cetera, et cetera.

This is the gist of this agreement, as I explained to your investi-
gators. At the time, the corporate outfit was not present, the stock
certificates. They were supposed to be delivered. I understand
there were certain options on stock. I have very little knowledge
beyond that point.

Mr. Kennedy. So the company was turned over to Mr. Dranow
with the understanding that if he felt he couldn't make a deal of it or
wanted to turn it back, he could return it ; is that correct ?

Mr. BuRRis. Well, it was turned over to the extent of this agree-
ment. But I don't know what papers were delivered subsequent

Mr. Kennedy. That agreement provides that it was to be turned

Mr. BuRRis. Was to be, yes. I don't know if it ever was. How-
ever, I heard the testimony that some papers were returned. So
evidently something was delivered.

Mr. Kennedy. Mr. May, Mr. Burris made reference to the fact
that he told you about this situation when you first interviewed him.
What did he say about Akros ?

Mr. May. We asked Mr. Burris if there existed at any time an
agree between Akros and Mr. Dranow, or himself, and Mr. Burris
denied that such an agreement ever existed.

Mr. Kennedy. It that correct, Mr. Burris?

Mr. Burris. As far as I understand, an agreement is basically a
meeting of the minds, mutually decided by the parties. This is a one-
sided agreement. There was only one copy of it. I didn't even know
it was ever completely signed. I didn't Imow it was ever completed.

Mr. Kennedy. When our investigators found the agreement, what
did you say to them?

Mr. Burris. Let your investigator testify to that.

Mr. Kennedy. What did you say ?

Mr. Burris. I don't recall.

Mr. Kennedy. What did he say?

Mr. May. He said, "I thought it had been destroyed."

Mr. Burris, That is right. I said as far as I knew, there was only
one copy of it. I didn't think anything would come of the whole
thing. I didn't see the complete copy executed as far as I recall.

Mr, Kennedy. Did he deny that he knew anything about such an
agreement originally ?

Mr. May. Initially; yes.

Mr. Kennedy. Did you press him many times on it?

Mr. May. Many times.

Mr. Ivennedy. Did you press him on whether there had been a
meeting of any kind on this matter ?

Mr. MvY. Yes ; many times.

Mr. ICennedy. Did he deny there had been a meeting?

Mr. '^L\Y. Yes, sir.

Mr. Burris. What do you mean many times ? We only discussed it
20 minutes.

Mr. JSIay. It came out.


Mr. Kennedy. This gentleman, Mr. Chairman, made our investi-
gation very, very difficult. We went to him to try to get the infor-
mation. He denied any knowledge of it, and refused to give us any
information. If it weren't for the work of the investigators and the
cooperation of Mr. Naiman subsequently, we wouldn't have had the
true picture on this matter.

It shows the difficulty in trying to trace down some of these oper-
ations. You will see the involvement of the Teamsters later on. But
it will show the difficulty of tracing down these operations when Mr.
Burris and then his father became fronts for Mr. Dranow, and then
when a representative of the U.S. Government attempts to come in
and get some information, here he is, an attorney, it is charitable to
say he told an untruth to the investigators.

The Chairman. Wliat happened is he withheld as much informa-
tion as he thought he could at the time. We have succeeded in develop-
ing, apparently, the facts.

The document, the one-sided contract, of course, speaks for itself.
As I understand, it was taken in Mr. Burris, but the owner of any
rights or equities claimed thereunder would be Mr. Dranow.

Is that correct? In other words, you had no interest in it other
than as the agent or trustee for Mr. Dranow ?

Mr. Burris. That is right, sir.

The Chairman. It was his property. All rights enumerated or pro-
cured by reason of that document went to Mr. Dranow and not to
you personally ?

Mr. Burris. That is right. And another thing, Senator McClellan,
you must understand that when somebody comes to you cold on a
proposition like this, and you are an attorney representing a client,
the first thought that comes to your mind is privileged communication.

Mr. Kennedy. You don't lie.

Mr. Burris. I didn't lie.

The Chairman. All you have to say is, "I have a client, and that
is privileged, and I am not going to talk about it.'" But anyhow, we
have the facts, have we ?

Mr. Kennedy. Were you reimbursed by Mr. Dranow in connection
with this matter ?

Mr. Burris. I was.

Mr. Kennedy. When were you reimbursed ?

Mr. Burris. I have sent Mr. Dranow — I have asked Mr. Dranow
for moneys from time to time. I received some moneys on account.
He owes me other moneys.

Mr. Kennedy. How much money have you received from him ?

Mr. Burris. On account?

IMr. Kennedy. On this. How much money did you receive from him
on this ?

Mr. Burris. I haven't broken it down what my total bill will even-
tually be. I received $750.

Mr. Kennedy. From him ?

Mr. Burris. That is right.

Mr. Kennedy. In connection with this and other matters ?

Mr. Burris. That is right.

Mr. Kennedy. Did you get reimbursed for your trip to Cleveland?

Mr. Burris. Nor did I get reimbursed for my trip to Cleveland.


Mr. Ejennedy. Did you get reimbursed for your trip to Cleveland ?

Mr. BuRRis. Yes, I did.

Mr. Kennedy. Did you get reimbui-sed for your trip to Florida ?

Mr. BuRRis. Of course.

Mr. Kennedy. From whom ?

Mr. BuRRis. Mr. Dranow.

Mr. Kennedy. When was that ?

Mr, BuRRis. Out of the $750. That is on account.

Mr. Kennedy. Wliat do you mean "on account" ? He has paid you ?

Mr. BuRRis. That is right.

Mr. Kennedy. He has paid you ?

Mr. BuRRis. That is right.

Mr. Kjennedy. When did he pay you ?

Mr. BuRRis. Recently.

Mr. Kennedy. When?

Mr. BuRRis. With the last week I got a check out of him.

Mr. KJENNEDY, Isn't it correct that if it hadn't been for this in-
vestigation you wouldn't have gotten paid, and the way you did get
paid for your father and you acting as fronts was that you received
a $1,400,000 loan from the pension and welfare fund, your father did,
and a $735,000 loan? Isn't this just another example of Mr. Hoffa
and the Teamsters doing favors for those who are friendly with Mr.

Mr, BtJRRis, You are permeating inferences — ^your innuendoes

Mr, Kennedy. It is not innuendoes. That is a statement.

Mr. BuRRis. It isn't true. I sent him a bill in February or March
for $699 and change, setting forth the various work I had done for
him. He sent me a check for $750 on account. You can say anything
you want to, but I feel that I am being reimbursed, that I have moneys
coming on various things that I have done for him, and you have no
right to make these innuendoes and allegations.

Mr, Kennedy, They are not innuendoes,

Mr. BuERis. And I will stake my professional reputation against
anybody, my service to my company, et cetera.

Senator Curtis, Mr. Chairman

The Chairman. Senator Curtis ?

Senator Curtis. Mr, Burris, had this transaction become fully

Mr, BuRRis. This had not

Senator Curtis, I say if it had, Mr, Dranow would have to pay
indebtedness running over $1 million ; is that correct ?

Mr, Burris, I presume so, but it is speculation. It is speculation,
I don't know what the amounts, the total sums owned are as against
what there might have been in the bank or what his arrangement
might have been. And besides, it wouldn't be he personally ; it would
be the Akros Corp,

Senator Curtis, He was principal owner, had the contract become
fully executed,

Mr, Burris, Well, the corporation would have owed them.

Senator Curtis. And he owned the corporation, had the contract
become fully executed,

Mr, Burris, It appears so.

Senator Curtis, Well, you knew it, didn't you ?


Mr. BuRRis. Knew what, sir?

Senator Curtis. You know of your own knowledge that he would
have become the owner.

Mr. BuRRis. If this had gone through ?

Senator Curtis. Yes.

Mr. Burris. Yes. I presume so ; yes.

Senator Curtis. Now, in handling this transaction to attempt to
raise money for a deal of this magnitude, was there any conversation
or any negotiations or any expectations that Teamster money or credit
or bank deposits or Teamster assets of any kind would come into the
picture in order to make the financial venture a success ?

Mr. BuRRis. Absolutely not. There was never any talk of any-
thing like that.

Senator Curtis. Did anything like that happen ?

Mr. BuRRis. I don't know.

Senator Curtis. Is there any relation between the use of Teamster
funds, assets, credits, bank deposits, or any other thing belonp-ing
to the Teamsters having any part in this transaction ?

Mr. Burris. Not to my knowledge. All I know is that Mr. Dranow
pulled out of this almost very soon after the date of this agreement.
How many weeks afterwards, I don't know.

Senator Curtis. Teamster funds have been used to make loans to
your father ?

Mr. BuRRis. Not to my father directly. On real estate corporations.

Senator Curtis. That he is the principal owner of ?

Mr. BuRRis. He is one of the principal owners.

Senator Curtis. Do you know what the proceeds of those loans
were used for?

Mr. BuRRis. Certainly. On the Prudential Building in Buffalo,
that was a refinancing of the mortgage. That wasn't money to pur-
chase the building. That is a very fine mortgage and a very good

Senator Curtis. Were all of the proceeds of that loan used to re-
finance existing indebtedness ?

Mr. BuRRis. That is right. Plus repayment to stockholdei-s of
advances that were used in the alteration of the building. That was
the purpose ; to get the additional capital above the present mortgage.
There was almost a half million dollars in cash put into that build-
ing by the stockholders to rehabilitate an old building into a first-class,
modern building.

Senator Curtis. Wliat was the other loan for ?

Mr. Burris. The other loan is on new construction, where moneys
must be put in, into the bank, by a group to be organized, to build a
garden apartment development. In other words, if you get a permit
commitment on a real estate construction, before the owners can turn
a blade of grass they have to have money available to assure the lender
that the building will be completed.

Senator Curtis. If that venture succeeds or had succeeded, who was
the real owner that would gain by that? That is, the building

Mr. Burris. The new building project?

Senator Curtis. Yes.

Mr. Burris. There are a number of owners.

19050 ijsiproper activities in the labor field

Senator Curtis. Who is the principal owner ?

Mr. BuRRis. My father, Mr, Rubin on the coast, a number of people
who will put in money.

Senator Curtis. Is Mr. Dranow connected with it ?

Mr. BuRRis. You will have to ask my father. If he wants to put
in some money, I am sure he will be connected with it.

Senator Curtis. How was Mr. Dranow

Mr. Burris. This is to my knowledge. I have no exact knowledge.

Senator Curtis. How did Mr. Dranow expect to handle a trans-
action of this magnitude ?

Mr. BuRRis. You will have to ask Mr. Dranow. I have no idea of
how Mr. Dranow uses his funds.

Senator Curtis. It is your statement that assets or bank deposits
of the Teamsters never came into the picture at all ?

Mr. Burris. On the airplane deal ?

Senator Curtis. Yes.

Mr. Burris. Not to my knowledge.

Senator Curtis. That is all.

Mr. Kennedy. Mr. Chairman, so that we get the record complete
as to this agreement dated February 14, 1959, it states :

Dear Mr. Naiman : This letter, upon your signing below as accepting it,
sliall constitute an agreement between us as follows :

and then it goes on to state that :

Alvin A. Naiman hereby sells all of the outstanding capital stock of the Akros
Dynamics Corp. to Herbert R. Burris as nominee, and agrees to deliver said
certificates of stock,

and it goes on, together with the resignations, the corporate outfit,
and bank records,

that all certificates of stock shall be delivered free and clear of any loans,
encumbrances, and claims whatsoever.

So it was more than just an option purchase in that period of time,
was it not, Mr. Burris?

Mr. Burris. You can interpret the agreement as well as I can.

Mr. Kennedy. Wouldn't you agree on that, then, that it wns more
than just an option ?

ISlr. Burris. It was meant to be more than just an option. But at
the same time, it meant to give him control so that he could do any-
thing he wanted at that point to facilitate the proposition. But as
far as I know, it was never completed.

Mr. Kennedy. It says it is completed upon signing, and it is wit-
nessed—again, it is witnessed at that time by Mr. Louis Triscaro.

Mr. Burris. This agreement was drawn up in 1 hour. It is not a
work of art.

Mr. Kennedy. This is the document, and maybe your defense would
be that you didn't draw it properly, but this is tlie document and it
speaks for itself.

Mr. Burris. I know it is the document, but the facts speak even
stronger than the document.

Mr. Kennedy. That is all.

The Chairman. Is there anything further?

All right. Thank you.

Call the next witness.


Mr. Kennedy. Mr. Naiman.

Mr. Allder, maybe you could explain to the committee before Mr.
Xaiman testifies, as far as Mr. Benjamin Dranow — where he is. Mr.
Burris suggested we might get some of these answers from him.

The Chairman. Mr. Allder, do you represent Mr. Dranow?

Mr. Allder. Yes, Senator, I represented him when he appeared
here before the committee last fall, as I recall it, or last November.

The Chairman. Was he placed under continuing subpena?

Mr. Allder. Continuing subpena, subject to reasonable notice
through me as his attorney. I received notice, I would say, at least
2 weeks ago, approximately that time, from Mr. Kennedy. The same
day that I received notice I was able to contact Mr. Dranow and told
him he was due here yesterday, June 29, 1959^ at 10 a.m.

Yesterday morning I received a telegram from Miami Beach, Fla.,
from Benjamin Dranow.

Unable to appear in Washington due to wliat doctor describes as coronary
insufficiency. Doctor's certificate will follow with details.

Benjamin Dranow.

Then at Mr. Kennedy's request, I learned that he was in the St.
Francis Hospital, Miami Beach, Fla., room 310. I have not yet
received the certificate from the doctor. When I do, I certainly will
immediately bring it to the committee.

Mr. Kennedy. Do you know when he went to the hospital ?

Mr. Allder. No, sir ; I do not. My first knowledge was yesterday
morning when I received this telegram, which w^as sent, I think, at
9 :50 something Sunday evening. I didn't get it until I entered my
office yesterday morning. It had been dropped through the mail

Mr. Kennedy. We checked, and I believe he went to tlie hovspital
on Saturday.

The Chairman. After he received notice to be here?

Mr. Kennedy. Yes.

Mr. Allder. He was not in the hospital when I contacted him orig-
nally to tell him to be here.

Mr. Kennedy. I might say, Mr. Chairman, Mr. Allder lias been
completely cooperative. But this is the second time this has happened
as far as Mr. Dranow is concerned, that he has gone to the hospital
after he received notification, and it is the second or third time it has
happened as far as Barney Baker is concerned.

The Chairman. This is no reflection upon Mr. Allder. He is co-
operating. He is keeping faith with the committee and also with
a client. He can't help what his client does.

Mr. Kennedy. Absolutely. The first time it happened was before
Mr. Allder represented him.

The Chairman. Thank you very much.

Come forward, Mr. Naiman.

You do solemnly swear that the evidence you shall give before this
Senate select committee shall be the truth, the whole truth, and nothing
but the truth, so help you God ?

Mr. Naiman. T do.



The Chairman. State your name, your place of residence, and your
business or occupation.

Mr. Naiman. My name is Alvin A. Naiman. My residence is 2900
Fairmont Boulevard, Cleveland Heights, Ohio. My occupation is —
T am president of the Alvin Naiman Corp., in Cleveland, Ohio.

The Chairman. All right. Thank you very much.

You waive counsel ?

Mr. Naiman. It is not necessary, sir.

The Chairman. You waive it then ?

Mr. Naiman. Yes, sir.

The Chairman. Proceed.

Mr. Kennedy. Mr. Naiman, you are here at the request of the
committee ?

Mr. Naiman. Yes, sir.

Mr. Kennedy. You are not here under subpena ; is that correct ?

Mr. Naiman. That is right, sir.

Mr. Kennedy. You have had a number of interviews with the staff
of the committee ?

Mr. Naiman. Yes, sir.

Mr. Kennedy. You are president and principal stockholder of the
Alvin A. Naiman Corp., which is an industrial wrecking and scrap
company ?

Mr. Naiman. That is correct.

Mr. Kennedy. And the Niagara Crushed Stone, Ltd., a crushed
rock and gravel company which operates quarries in Ontario, Canada ?

Mr. Naiman. That is correct.

Mr. Kennedy. And which has sales offices and facilities in Cleve-
land, Ohio?

Mr. Naiman. That is right, sir.

Mr. Kennedy. You have known Mr. Triscaro for a long period of
time ; is that right ?

Mr. Naiman. That is correct, sir.

Mr. Kennedy. You initial participation in Akros Dynamics Corp.
commenced on March 10, 1958, approximately ?

Mr. Naiman. That is approximately right, sir.

Mr. Kennedy. When you entered into a contract with Mr. Benja-
min and Mr. Zappone ?

Mr. Naiman. That is correct.

Mr. Kennedy. Whereby you were going to purchase these airplanes
we have had discussed by Mr. Benjamin ?

Mr. Naiman. That is right.

Mr. Kennedy. Subsequently, you got control of the airplanes as
was revealed by Mr. Benjamin '?

Mr. Naiman. Yes, sir.

Mr. Kennedy. Then you went to the Florida bank to make a loan ?

Mr. Naiman. That is riglit.

Mr. Kennedy. And Mr. Benjamin has given us the correct facts

Online LibraryUnited States. Congress. Senate. Select CommitteeInvestigation of improper activities in the labor or management field. Hearings before the Select Committee on Improper Activities in the Labor or Management Field (Volume pt. 54) → online text (page 30 of 38)