Article Courtesy of The Palm Beach Post
By Tony Doris
Published February 16, 2017
A major West Palm Beach condo association is urging
statewide prosecutors to bring charges against former members of its board
of directors who, Florida condominium regulators say, misspent more than $1
million of association money.
Dane Leitner, attorney for Whitehall Condominiums of the Villages of Palm
Beach Lakes Association Inc., wrote to the Office of the Attorney General
Feb. 8, saying association members want criminal charges brought so they can
seek restitution for the 20-building, 480-unit complex on Village Boulevard.
As reported Feb. 5 in The Palm Beach Post, the Florida Department of
Business and Professional Regulation’s Bureau of Compliance determined that
former board members committed “major” civil violations of condo law, giving
themselves jobs and salaries, spending association money at casinos and
using reserves to cover operating expenses.
“Since 2014, our firm has attempted to inquire about the status of the
criminal investigation and help facilitate the investigation with FDLE
(Florida Department of Law Enforcement) and OAG (Office of the Attorney
General), but it does not appear that either department has made substantial
progress, nor does it seem to be a priority,” Leitner wrote.
The association fears that with more delays, the statute of limitation might
elapse on alleged crimes any chance of prosecuting or getting restitution
could be impacted, he said. “Time is of the essence.”
The FDLE did investigate the Whitehall violations, forwarded its report to
the Office of Statewide Prosecution and is waiting to hear if the
prosecutors will bring criminal charges based on the findings, an FDLE
From 2010 to 2015, the board improperly paid directors Vincent Rossi,
Charles Keeling and Michael Weadock more than $242,000, according to a
letter to the current board from Lead Investigator Harry Hague of the Bureau
of Compliance. State law requires that condo officers serve without pay
unless the condo documents allow otherwise, he said.
Rossi and Weadock were paid as property managers and Keeling, for security
The association also spent an estimated $357,200 “for expenses unrelated to
condominium operations,” Hague said. Condo ledgers show those expenses
included ATM withdrawals at the Taj Mahal casino in Atlantic City, N.J. and
the Seminole Casino in Coconut Creek.
And the association “diverted” $455,000 from reserves into the operating
fund without condo owner approval, he said.
Rossi and Weadock denied wrongdoing. Keeling could not be reached for
comment. Weadock, as recently as 2015, also served as president of the
Island Towers Inc. condo association in Lantana.