Stuart Meissner, Esq. Independent Candidate for U.S. Senate, New Jersey, Announces First Ever Alimony POW Freedom March
For Immediate Release
Contact: Joyce Davis – (646) 335-5882
September 8, 2013
Tenafly, NJ, – Stuart Meissner, who is running as an Independent in New Jersey’s upcoming Special Election for U.S. Senate, has announced today that tomorrow, Monday, September 9, 2013 starting at 12:30 pm he will be holding a large alimony POW Freedom Rally and March. The event will commence at the Bergen County Courthouse, 10 Main Street, Hackensack N.J. and proceed with police escort to the nearby Bergen County Prison.
The event’s goal is to protest the horrific continuation of debtor’s prison in New Jersey for those unable to pay their alimony, as well as the unlawful failure to provide these indigent prisoners with their due process right to counsel. Between 75 to 100 people are expected to attend with signs, buttons and t-shirts that read “Free the Alimony POWs” and similar slogans. The event has gone viral on social media outlets and is attracting people from around the country.
The marchers are focusing on two prisoners with hearings scheduled to take place in Hackensack’s Prison Court at 1:30 p.m. The first is George Reynaldo who has been incarcerated for over 5 months due to his inability to pay the $6,000 of monthly support he owes as his income has dropped from $150,000 pre 2009 to under $40,000. Meissner commenting on Mr. Reynaldo stated -
“Mr. Reynaldo’s case is classic. He cannot afford to pay the alimony he is assessed, and is therefore incarcerated. He cannot afford to pay for an attorney to argue that he is unable to pay, and has been denied his right to counsel and due process. New Jersey is running debtor’s prisons for alimony payers, and innocent men and women like Mr. Reynaldo are suffering horrifically.” Mr. Reynaldo, a 52 year old Cuban immigrant, commenting on the event taking place on his behalf, stated: “I am humbled by the outpouring of support Mr. Meissner has brought to bear on the Justice system and it has provided me with new faith and hope in the Justice system which I lost all respect for while being in prison, after never having trouble with the law.”
The Second prisoner is Ariel Schochet, the father of four daughters from Teaneck N.J.. Like Mr. Reynaldo, Mr. Schochet can neither afford to pay his assessed alimony or for an attorney to argue his inability to pay and he is also being denied his due process right to counsel as an indigent individual. His case was featured on Bloomberg News two weeks ago.
Mr. Meissner, a New York whistleblower and investor lawyer, former prosecutor in Manhattan DA Robert Morgenthau’s office and a former Assistant Attorney General in Elliot Spitzer’s Investor Protection Bureau, is passionate about the issue of alimony reform. He is seeking the U.S. Senate seat under the slogan “Alimony Reform Now” and has made alimony and Family Court reform a central issue to his campaign. Meissner in announcing the March stated “every day in this State judges are incarcerating non-criminals without even a sentence. They do so notwithstanding the fact that the incarcerated non-criminal has no ability to pay the alimony assessed. Even worse, these incarcerated individuals are treated worse than the common criminal. Besides improperly being placed in general population with criminal incarcerates, they are denied their right to counsel and hence the Inability To Pay hearings mandated by the State. Unlike common prisoners, these innocent men and women are placed in prison without any end date.” Meissner claims that the lower Courts are violating what he calls the “alimony POW’s” constitutional due process rights as espoused by the Supreme Court of the State of New Jersey.
Meissner, of Dumont New Jersey, who besides his concern for Alimony, is running under an anti-corruption and Wall Street influence platform, has also challenged both the Democratic Candidate Cory Booker and Republican Steve Lonegan to include him in the upcoming TV debates.