Richard Rubin Got A Light Sentence!


U. S. District Judge William Zloch isn’t exactly a hanging judge.  But he is one of the toughest judges in South Florida.

So Richard Rubin, who got a 10-month sentence from Zloch on Wednesday for income tax evasion, should consider himself lucky.  He could have gotten five years.

Rubin, the husband of former County Commissioner Diana Wasserman-Rubin, failed to report $120,000 in income.  He owed $35,000 in taxes on this money.

I’ve known Rubin for 20 years. None of this is a surprise.

He always reminded me of a remora. That’s the fish that attaches itself to a shark and eats the morsels that fall from the host’s mouth.  Rubin latched on to politics and fed off the crumbs that he could grab.

Diana Wasserman-Rubin has been his enabler for years.  She is facing trial for voting for thousands of dollars worth of grants that paid her husband Rubin $45,000 in bonuses.

Or as The Sun-Sentinel quoted federal prosecutor Jeffrey Kaplan today: “The defendant and his wife have been feeding at the government’s trough for many, many years.”

As far back as 1995, Rubin was getting public money from the School Board while his then-girlfriend Wasserman was a Board member. I wrote about it in the Sun-Sentinel.

Rubin got a $5,800 contract to help the school system draft rules for development.   $5,800?

“The figure of $5,800 is significant. The staff can hand out consulting contracts under $6,000 without having to take proposals from others wanting the job,” I wrote at the time.

Rubin was a land-use specialist.  But he got the job after dating Diana Wasserman for a year.

When they married a few years later, several political insiders predicted confidentially that Richard would end up getting Diana in trouble.  Alas, they were right.

Rubin had hoped to get off without prison time.  No way, with Zloch on the bench.

Zloch’s Star Shined Before Taking The Bench

Many South Floridians know nothing about Zloch.  He has been a federal judge for so long, we forget where he came from.

Zloch is Old Fort Lauderdale.  He’s from a family who lived here long before the big influx of northerners changed Broward from a sleepy, conservative Southern town into a liberal metropolis.

He got a Catholic education from grade school through Law School.  When other kids were rebelling their way through the 1960s, Zloch was a jock humping his way through high school, college, law school and Vietnam.

Zloch first hit the newspapers as a star quarterback at Fort Lauderdale’s Central Catholic High School, which later became St. Thomas Aquinas. He went on to play first-string quarterback for Notre Dame in 1965.

There was Notre Dame Law School and service in Vietnam.  He then returned to a very low key civil law practice with an old Fort Lauderdale firm.  In 1974, the Broward County Bar Association rewarded him for doing more pro bono work than any lawyer in the county.

His only memorable involvement in politics was as treasurer for Mike Satz’s 1980 re-election as State Attorney.  Five years later, this registered Democrat was appointed to the bench by President Ronald Reagan.

In a Sun-Sentinel profile 11 years ago, lawyers who practiced in front of Zloch equated him with U. S. Supreme Court Justices William Rehnquist, Clarence Thomas and Antonin Scalia. They called him tough, conservative, no-nonsense and well-prepared, with a reputation for giving stiff sentences.

Zloch didn’t live up to his billing Wednesday for stiff sentences.

Rubin underpaid his taxes and prosecutors charged he lied in court.  He and his wife traveled extensively through Europe, the Caribbean and the United States, spending the money that was owed to Uncle Sam.

Ten months!  Too little.

Wednesday will go down in Fort Lauderdale federal courthouse lore.  It was the day Zloch handed out a light sentence.

7 Responses to “Richard Rubin Got A Light Sentence!”

  1. Bobb says:

    Rubin was probably given a humane sentence so he could be available during his wife’s trial. It was a bit shocking that Richard continue to lie to the judge right up until the end even though Zloch saw through it and called him on it. No remorse.

    Lets see what happens next to his wife. She’s a liar and phoney too.

    If convicted she probably wont serve any time.

    Finally while I like the remora analogy, remoras are like air plants they dont feed off their host. Rubin is parasitic, more akin to a leech that sucks the blood from its host until full then moves on to its next victim. Richard was a leech in his dealing with Southest Ranches along with his buddies Canada and Cor.

    It will be interesting to see how little Richard makes out in prison.

  2. Tomas Tripparro says:

    I pay my taxes. I have no sympathy for Rubin.

  3. Death Frog 3 says:

    Buddy, You are wrong on this. 1 10 month sentence is actually more harsh than a year and a day sentence.

    Anything under a year he has to do day for day. At a year and a day he does the same 10 months with but he’s home in a “halfway house” in 6 months


    I understand that he has to do the entire sentence if it is less than a year.

    However, what if he had been given two years? What about five?

  4. Death Frog 3 says:

    There are is a point syatem in place and the guidelines call for 10-16 months. This is to ensure sentences are equal to the crimes convicted any where in the jurisdiction. The guy was convicted for lying on his taxes. Give him the same sentence that other convicted for doing the same thing would get.

    I have no problem putting Rubin in jail for life. He just needs to be convicted of the crime first then sentence him.

    I find the guy disgraceful and if he is convicted of other crimes this is used as an aggravating factor and then the guidelines will call for a stiffer sentence.

    Quite frankly Rubin’s sentence is stiffer than LeVin’s and LeVin killed 2 people.

    That’s why the federal guidelines work.

  5. City Activist Robert Walsh says:

    Right on the money Buddy. To go futher, he made such a stink about serving 10 months in the can. I mean telling the media, judge, etc. that his wife mind as well called her an invalid(shame). Although no one was buying his hoopla but himself and his poor wife. incidently he is her worst nightmare. As far as she is concerned I hardly doubt she will ever face trial. They allready planted the seed(although ineffective) that Mrs.Rubin, can’t be left alone etc. no money, no care, etc. What she will probably do is have her MD. write up a huge assessment that basiclly she is totally disabled unable to go to any futher court proceedings. If this is the route be careful lady, there watch-in you. will her stragety work? Will see. When is her next court date? The ball will then role as stated. Feel very bad for her though. Here she came from a Communist, dictarship only to succumb to a greedy, self serfing, man, who only thinks about the almighty dollar, and more importantly keeping up w/ the Jones. See how many of the Jones, come see you Mr.Rubin, or for that matter, Mrs.Rubin……

  6. Floridan says:

    Thank god we have an independent judiciary and sentencing guidelines in this country. Based on the comments here, if this were not the case, the politically unpopular would be languishing in dungeons.

    As was pointed out above, plenty of people commit crimes a lot more heinous and receive lighter sentences.

    On the other hand, this might be Buddy’s way of stirring up the pitchforks and torches crowd to gin up page hits.

  7. Guidelines A Problem says:

    This comment relates to sentencing guidelines. Ten months for this offsense seems excessive in comparison to sentences recommended for more serious charges. Go look at the federal sentencing guidelines and see. There does not seem to be much sense to that pattern of punishment. I am not excusing that tax evasion occurred simply that ten months on top of an agreement to repay the tax plus a fine seems excessive in a case pleaded out in comparison to prison terms recommended for much more serious crimes where trials are actually involved. The winners here are the lawyers the losers are the taxpayers that have to pay for these prison terms. The sentencing guidelines need rethinking.