From the NY Post:
Jeffrey Gottlieb, a late entry into the hotly contested Democratic primary to replace Rep. Gary Ackerman in Queens’ 6th District, was charged with setting a 1971 arson fire in his Flushing apartment.
The blaze destroyed the home and damaged some half-dozen others in the building.
Gottlieb, 70, a retired schoolteacher and longtime Democratic operative, apparently kept the crime a secret for years.
But court documents obtained by The Post show he was arrested on Dec. 28, 1971, and charged with second-degree arson, a felony.
Gottlieb used gasoline to torch the apartment on 35th Avenue. His wife and infant son weren’t home, and no one else in the building was hurt, according to a source familiar with the case.
Gottlieb was treated at an upstate psychiatric hospital, the source said.
Gottlieb, who was a teacher at Benjamin Cardozo HS in Bayside at the time, took a “leave without pay for restoration of health” on April, 15, 1972, and returned to the school on Sept. 5, 1972, according to the Department of Education.
He plea-bargained the arson charge down to fourth-degree criminal mischief on Oct. 13, 1972, court records show.
Gottlieb managed to keep his teaching job, retiring in 2000. He collects a pension of about $54,000 a year and now works for the Board of Elections as a $27,927-a-year clerk.
Gottlieb, who got divorced after the fire and remarried, entered the congressional contest this month, joining a race with three other Democratic candidates.