A Queens newspaper publisher found herself on the wrong side of a headline after authorities said she was messing with the mob.
Patricia Adams, publisher of The Forum, was arrested Wednesday on a charge of witness tampering in a bizarre offshoot of a loansharking case involving the Bonanno crime family, according to Brooklyn federal prosecutors.
Instead of simply signing off on a story about the scheme, Adams became a key player, using her weekly newspaper to bully a woman out of testifying against a Bonanno associate accused of sexually harassing the woman at his Broad Channel deli.
The harassment accusation against Robert Pisani threatened the freedom he enjoyed after posting $500,000 bail in a $26 million loansharking scheme in and around Howard Beach, officials said.
Adams allegedly stepped in, and tried to make the woman’s father talk his daughter out of cooperating with federal law enforcement.
Days ahead of Pisani’s bail revocation hearing, the local newswoman played hardball with the victim’s dad and said she’d dirty up the daughter in her paper, prosecutors said.
Judge Brian Cogan agreed to release Adams late Wednesday on $150,000 bond. Adams also had to put up her house as collateral.
She’ll be under house arrest, so if she wants to go out and interview people for the paper, she’ll have to get the green light from pretrial services, Cogan said.
Adams is looking at up to 20 years if convicted.