VAN NUYS : Weinberg Guilty of Defrauding Clients Out of Nearly $1 Million

A former Beverly Hills commodities broker--who once infiltrated an organized crime family for the FBI and was closely allied with Dist. Atty. Ira Reiner, Mayor Tom Bradley and other prominent local Democrats--was convicted Tuesday of defrauding clients out of nearly $1 million.

The conviction of Mark R. Weinberg, 37, was promptly thrust into the election campaign for district attorney. One of Reiner's rivals called Weinberg's $206,00 contribution to Reiner's 1984 campaign "mob-generated" money and demanded that the district attorney return it.

"The top law enforcement officer in the county should not be in possession of what I believe is mob-generated money," Deputy Dist. Atty. Gil Garcetti, one of Reiner's four challengers in the June 2 primary, said at the Van Nuys courthouse, where Weinberg stood trial.

Garcetti acknowledged that he could not prove that the money Weinberg gave Reiner in 1984 came from organized crime figures and added: "I have faith that Reiner did not know the money he took originated with the mob."

If Reiner returned the $206,000, Garcetti said, "it could be used to partly compensate the victims in this case."

Reiner campaign spokesman Robert Ellis declined to comment.

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