Meet Miami Beach Commissioner Michael Gongora's "Prince of Darkness"

GongoraHilliard.jpg
Michael Gongorra and Randall Hilliard, AKA "Prince of Darkness."
Michael Gongora is a Miami Beach commissioner running for mayor. On his campaign website, the commish touts his corruption-fighting credentials, boldly proclaiming he engineered the dismissal of shady city employees who violated the public's trust. "Now, thanks to my leadership," Gongora boasts on his website, "City Hall is more transparent."

Oddly, Miami Beach's white knight has retained the services of one Randall Hilliard, a political consultant who fancies himself the "Prince of Darkness." Yes, really. To prove his demonic reputation, Hilliard listed his phone number under his Satanic nomme de guerre when he lived in Key West.

Coincidentally, Hilliard is the brains behind an electioneering communications organization, the laughably named Citizens for Fiscal Responsibility, that has not disclosed the source of money being used to attack one of Gongora's opponents. Transparency, indeed.

According to the Florida Division of Elections, Hilliard registered Citizens for Fiscal Responsibility on October 14, 2011. Three days later, his Evil Highness formed the corporation Women's Leadership Conference in Carson City, Nevada. The address is a property owned by Gongora's dad, Alberto. Another coincidence, or are we starting to see a pattern here?

Well, it just so happens the registered agent for Women's Leadership Conference was -- wait for it -- Sandra Page Millard, Gongora's mom. Holy cow! The coincidences are piling up. But maybe Banana Republican is just overreacting.

nevadacorp.jpg
Women's Leadership Conference listed Gongora's mom as its registered agent until August 5.


After all, what does all of this have to do with Citizens for Fiscal Responsibility, you might ask? Glad you did!

Between July and August 2012, Women's Leadership Conference donated $17,400 to Citizens for Fiscal Responsibility. Then, for almost a year, the ECO registered no activity. Not a single attack ad or mailer against any opponent. Apparently, Hell's Hilliard even forgot he had to file quarterly reports, according to two warning letters from the Florida Division of Elections.

Fast-forward to a brief August 5 phone call between Banana Republican and the commissioner. We asked Gongora why his mom and his political mercenary were involved in a Nevada corporation that was donating to a Florida ECO. Initially, Gongora tried to make a joke of the question.

"Well, I do love the ladies, and the ladies love me," the openly gay politician quipped. But then he explained that his mother is involved in political campaigns in both states. Of course she is! "It has not been involved in my campaign for mayor of Miami Beach to my knowledge," Gongora added, referring to Hilliard's ECO.

Hilliard didn't respond to Banana Republican's requests for comment, but the following day, on August 6, Gongora's mom was no longer the registered agent for Women's Leadership Conference. Another coincidence!

Over the past month, Citizens for Fiscal Responsibility has kicked into high gear, sending out attack mailers against Philip Levine, a Miami Beach billionaire who is funding his own campaign for mayor. (So far, the group hasn't socked Miami Beach native son Steve Berke, who is also running.) In one of the pieces, mailed to Spanish-speaking voters, a photo of Levine is sandwiched between images of Fidel and Raúl Castro. The mailer alleges Levine does business with a private firm that has ties to Cuba's Communist regime.

If Gongora weren't the "transparent" candidate, one might think he's trying to conceal the fact that he has signed off on the Prince of Darkness' dirty tactics. But remember, Gongora is the guy who cleaned up city hall -- with a wink and a nudge.

Follow Francisco Alvarado on Twitter: @thefrankness

Follow Miami New Times on Facebook and Twitter @MiamiNewTimes.


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25 comments
jose.viernes
jose.viernes

How much is Levine paying you Mel? Did you do an investigation into Jonah Wolfson's aide, Lenore, and the house she just paid CASH for? I hope Levine gave enough money to buy a house for cash. Levine does tons of business with companies associated with Cuba. Look at who his biggest advertisers are.

melwilson
melwilson

The Miami Mirror (http://miamimirror.blogspot.com/2012/05/club-madonna-coverup.html) "conducted a brief investigation into [Hilliard's] background, and discovered that he reportedly turned state’s witness in a Key West case to gain immunity from bribery-related charge."

"Hilliard reportedly wore a wire in his 'scant' swim trunks at a nudist pool bar—a bag with another recording device was planted nearby—to record a damning conversation with a former county attorney for Monroe County. Hilliard ventured to Miami Beach, where he served the SunPost as political columnist for several years, became familiar with real estate developers through contacts with advertisers who supported the local newspaper, and then took up political consulting with the result that he collected many thousands of dollars from various city commissioners."

As they say, you are who your friends are and with whom you choose to associate.  Right Michael Gongora?

melwilson
melwilson

I've seen the mailer depicting Levine alongside the Castro boys.  Just despicable.  What will Gongora not resort to in order to get elected?  I'll never think good of him again.

And just last week I got 2 of those "Citizens for Fiscal Responsibility" mailers in my mail box.  Should have pulled them out with a pair of gloves, they were so sleazy!  Who doubts they're from anyone but Hilliard?  Gongora knows damn well what's going on, he's giving Hilliard orders and Hilliard no doubt is giving Mikey a peek at what the mailers look like before sending them off to the printer.  Mikey has final approval of it all (well, maybe after Mommy has had a look at them and signed off with her approval, too).

melwilson
melwilson

Sleazy Gongora and his lover -- er, I mean, consultant -- sleazemeister Hilliard want to win in the worst way, and they're resorting to some of the most diabolical, deceptive tricks in their black book to steal this election.  Anybody who's followed Gongora's political career knows that he puts on a boyish, smiling face, but behind that mask lurks a really dark, devious character whose sole driving motivation is what will make him look good and advance that career.  He strikes me as an ambitious type who, no sooner than he's elected mayor, would be casting his sights on bigger prizes (statehouse? governor?).

  His mommy reminds me of that Angela Lansbury character in THE MANCHURIAN CANDIDATE.... you know, the pushy, domineering mother who stopped at nothing, not even assassination.  Mommy Gongora has always played a behind the scenes role in Little Mikey's career.  Go on his Facebook page sometime and you'll see how she "likes" everything he posts.  I don't think the guy's ever turned up his nose at a photo op.  I can't think of another local pol whose had as many photo ops -- or who has posted so many of them to his social network sites.  It's all part of the grand PR factory that is GONGORA & CO.:  Hilliard, Little Mikey, and Mommy Gongora.  Everybody doing their dead level best to get Little Mikey elected.

  And then what?  Will Mommy Gongora be the power behind the throne?  "Women's Leadership Conference?"  WHAT A LAUGH!  The only thing she's leading is an effort to get her Little Mikey elected.  Thanks New Times for pulling back the curtain and revealing this trio and their devious machinations.  It's quite telling about Gongora that now he, Hilliard, and Mommy are all backtracking and trying to erase their footprints from everything.  TOO LATE, MIKEY!   Too bad the feds didn't lock his "Evil Highness" away in Club Fed when they had the chance instead of offering him that deal to snitch on his co-conspirators.  Heaven forbid if Little Mikey gets elected.  What cushy job will he give to his lover -- er, I mean -- Hilliard?

And Little Mikey didn't clean up City Hall.  He's part of the problem at City Hall.  He's got to go.  Miami Beach can do without him and his Prince of Darkness.  It says a lot about a guy when his colleague -- Jonah Wolfson -- withdraws his endorsement of him and switches to Levine.  That should be a clue to every other Miami Beach voter out there.

vizing7928
vizing7928

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brabhamdean
brabhamdean

Gongora gets tens of thousands in donations from Galbut, Bogomilsky & Jagodzinski, (all billionaires) thru hidden LLC's. Time for someone to get a state investigation going!

Biggest scandal: Gongora's support of Berke to attack Levine. A non-resident is recruited to attack Gongora's opponent.

brabhamdean
brabhamdean

I wonder why all the 'characters' in this election charade live/have lived/or have a property at the Charter Club in Miami. Michael Gongora owns unit 1902. Steve Berke owns (usually lives) at unit PH-14. Randy Hilliard lives in unit PH-26.  I wonder if there is a connection there between Gongora/Hilliard/Berke, and why Berke always seems to attack Gongora's opponent, vs Gongora.

jose.viernes
jose.viernes

I left out the part about the faux newspaper Moriarity supposedly publishes. Has anyone actually seen a copy?


jose.viernes
jose.viernes

"Accuracy Project"? Talk about a laughably named organization. A wholly-owned subsidiary of that carnival barker Philip Levine's Royal Media Partners, a company sued for deceptive practices and cheating customers by the Alaska Attorney General: "Customers were being ripped off," Ed Sniffen, Assistant Alaska Attorney General.

Another fraud is Jonah Moriarity and his non-existent publication that is nothing more than a front for a strip-club owner. 


Eyes
Eyes

I would swear this appears like Elaine del Valle's writing style.

accuracyproject
accuracyproject

The Project has also learned that Gongora accepted a $500 check on March 25 from a "Bram Portnoy," a Canadian who has been represented to us as a Jagodzinski partner "on some projects."  

Any further info about this or any other possible financial irregularities regarding his or ANYONE's campaign is welcomed by the Project.  Send to Cynthia or Ramon at accuracyproject@gmx.com and we promise to investigate. 

(The Public Accuracy Project neither endorses nor is affiliated with any candidate or campaign.)

jonahmoriarty
jonahmoriarty

Good article-

It clears-up a little about Michael Gongora's sidekick Randall Hilliard and his mom Sandra Page Millard.  I was curious.

Until a few months back, I had no real dog in this fight.  In  fact, perhaps I thought, Michael could do the job.  That fleeting thought then quickly moved south- after a few exchanges and texts. MNichael should not become the Mayor.  Period!

At first I was curious about Michael Gongora's position on the mounting (and large) lawsuits facing Miami Beach and the taxpayers.  

My curious starting point was what Michael's position on the City stonewalling the Miami courts over the 2011 Memorial Day shooting by the police, who shot a guy 16 times (killing him) and wounding several tourists.  

The city, if you recall, refused several court orders to turn over the police video evidence.  While the mass shoot-out itself was insane, where was the transparency, where did Michael Gongora (as a commissioner) stand on this?

When asked, Michael Gongora simply danced- and around and around we went.  At the end, Gongora provided nothing but a non-answer, boiler plate response.  Zero!  So I suspect that Miami Beach will be hit with massive financial loss's from that lawsuit.

Round #2 came about when the Miami Beach police killed 17 year old Israel Hernandez with a taser- for spray painting a wall.  Two nights after that killing Michael Gongora was attending a campaign fundraiser- pictures and all on facebook.

Frankly, if I were a commissioner and/or running for Mayor, and a kid gets killed this way, I would have spent my time either at the child's parent home or in the face of the police department with lots and lots of questions.

So, on facebook I asked Michael why he was partying like this right after a boy was killed this way.  That's when some women named Sandra Page Millard popped-up- with some glossy statement that Michael really cares, blah, blah, blah.  

Michael, at the time of that FB conversation was also online. I know because he 'Liked' Sandra Page Millard's response to me- and in real time. But he himself failed to speak up. He failed to show that concern- he failed to be transparent.

For a few days following that exchange Sandra Page Millard, started posting the wonder of Michael and started sending me private messages- saying that Michael is great and how concerned he is about Alton Road flooding.   Huh?

That prompted me to look at her page- and she popped-up as being based in Nevada. Curious I thought that a women who lives in Nevada (the desert) is sold on a candidate because of Alton Road floods.  That's when Michael Gongora started deleting my polite comments and questions.

Curious of this Sandra Page Millard, I slipped and became coy.  I jokingly asked her if she is his Mommy.  That's when Sandra Page Millard blocked me.  And here you are, in your article, telling me that yes, she is in fact Michael Gongora's Mommy.

Of course there is nothing wrong with a mother supporting her son-  but I would think that she should actually be proud and transparent enough and say "Yeah, that's my boy".  

But no, neither Michael Gongora nor his mother was transparent.  She remained a schill on his facebook page.  Oh well!

Then there is 
Randall Hilliard- who you refer to as 'The Prince of Darkness.  Your reporting on him clears-up yet another mystery.  So thanks.

Some time back a Miami Beach business person had an issue with the city (unnamed at this moment), so the businessman had lunch with Michael Gongora (after Michael had long before solicited the man for campaign money).  

As the lunch began and the subject of the problem issue came-up. Michael Gongora had said that he would support a solution for the man.  But then, a third person (and a surprise to the businessman) joined the table. A friend of Michael's.

Michael Gongora introduced the mystery table crasher- then Michael stated to the businessman that he could 'only' support a solution if the businessman hired the lunch crasher (Michael Gongora's friend) as the businessman's PR consultant.  

Stunned, the businessman did not take the offer too be extorted- lunch was over.

In closing, I see a laundry list of reasons that Michael Gongora should not become the next Mayor of Miami Beach. In fact, he should not even be a city commissioner.

I somehow see very expensive international party trips- with Michael as Mayor party junkits flying all over the world- with his friend (and perhaps Mommy) in tow, all on the taxpayers dime.  Your money.  

I, for one, give my full support to Philip Levine as the next Mayor of Miami Beach.  


Philip Levine has a positive business track record, he is self funded, which means that he owes no-one a favor in exchange for a contribution- and he is transparent.

My Disclaimer:  I do not work for Philip Levine, his campaign, nor am I a contractor or consultant or other.

I simply support Philip Levine's election because electing Mr. Levine is simply and clearly the correct way to go.  That is, if you are in favor of clearing several of the city's issues up, staying transparent and setting our course for our next era as perhaps the most special city in the nation.

Let's Do This & Thanks for your time.  I know that it was long winded.

Jonah Moriarty
Publisher
South Beach News


accuracyproject
accuracyproject

Gongora's campaign filings with the Miami Beach city clerk's office this year show that he accepted thousands of dollars in contributions from billionaire Christian Jagodzinski, whose LinkedIn page describes him as the president & founder of Villazo.

Gongora accepted a $500 check from CJ on March 20, and another $500 one on May 16.

Gongora also accepted an additional $2,500 from CJ-operated LLCs (5300 Pinetree, 4040 Ventura, Desdemona Capital, 10 Palm, and Villazzo) -- all between March 20 and 25.

The source who brought us this info questions how it is possible for Gongora to accept campaign contributions from a foreigner.  We are trying to track down whether Jagodzinski is or is not a citizen or permanent resident.  Anyone with info is asked to please contact Cynthia at the Public Accuracy Project (accuracyproject@gmx.com).  Thanks!

melwilson
melwilson

@jose.viernes 

 I don't even know Levine personally, so your insinuation that anyone who doesn't support Gongora must somehow be in the employ of Levine is indicative of the kind of puerile mindset you possess.

  I could turn it around & ask you the same question "jose"... how much is "Con"gora paying YOU?  Or are you Congora or The Prince of Darkness themselves?

 And what does Wolfson's aide's house got to do with the election of the next mayor of MB? 

My, my, my.  You Congora fanatics are really starting to lose your grasps on reality the closer we get to the election of Levine as mayor!  But please, by all means, don't let me deter you from continuing to rant and post your asinine mind-droppings here on this blog.

SwampyNoMore
SwampyNoMore

@brabhamdean The Miami Herald investigated Berke's residency and found that he has been living at the same address on Washington Ave for at least two years, so you are incorrect. Furthermore, anyone who has attended any of the debates has seen Berke attack Gongora with just as much venom as he uses on Levine... You are right about Gongora's connection to Galbut though, just look at the signage he has on Galbut's building on Alton Road.


melwilson
melwilson

@brabhamdean

I agree.  What clandestine agreement did Berke strike with Gongora?  Can't see how Berke thinks he has any serious chance of winning this race (must be that he's been too much into that "wacky weed" he's always promoting).  

Can only figure he's doing it for that documentary he's always talking about.  Hell, he was telling everybody the same thing when he ran for mayor in '11... that he was shooting a documentary (MTV?  Comedy Central?)  I recall the camera crew he had tagging along with him then. But whatever became of it? Did it ever get made? Did it ever air? Did anybody ever see it?

Wonder what plum reward Mikey & Randy have cooked up for little Stevie if Mikey gets elected.  "ASSISTANT TO THE MAYOR FOR RECREATIONAL DRUG POLICY" perhaps?

jose.viernes
jose.viernes

@brabhamdean Of course, you ignore the ECOs that Levine/Wolfson/Custin are using to churn out their sleaze. You got a real double standard going. Blame the Supreme Court and Citizens United.

jonahmoriarty
jonahmoriarty

Jose Viernes, or whatever your real name is;   Just provide your real name and address and I will have a stack of the South Beach News sent over to you.  So what is your real name and address?


What's this- you do not want to post your real name and address?  O.K,  then, just email me us at southbeachnews@gmail.com

Or perhaps you are really Michael Gongora and/or Randell Halliard. In that case, should we send them to City Hall for you?  Are you actually ever there and not always attending parties?   Just pick your choice of delivery and we'll get copies over to you. Promise.  
And P.S.  If I were you I would be less concerned with the South Beach News and more concerned with this article on Michael Congora in New Times.  It does not paint a very reliable picture of Michael Gongora.

Don't you agree?

accuracyproject
accuracyproject

@jose.viernes

The Public Accuracy Project, I can assure you in spite of your facetious and reckless claims, is not a part of Mr. Levine's business interests, nor is affilated in any way with ANY candidate or campaign.

Before making outlandish, false allegations that are not based upon any fact whatsoever, you should get your information straight, Jose Viernes, if in fact that is your true identity.

jonahmoriarty
jonahmoriarty

@jose.viernes 

Well "JOSE VIERNES", it appears that after a search- there is NO Jose Viernes in Miami.  Why don't you identify yourself?  Are you perhaps actually Michael Gongora himself hiding behind a pseudonym?

Or perhaps The Prince of Darkness?  Come out, come out whoever you are.

jonahmoriarty
jonahmoriarty

@jose.viernes A front for a Strip Club owner Jose?  What are you talking about exactly?  I am listening.  What is your real name?

SwampyNoMore
SwampyNoMore

@melwilson Berke is Certainly not a fan of Gongora. Look at what Gongora pulled at the debate at the Temple on Washington a week back. Gongora and Hilliard sent a Mariachi band to the debate and then Gongora suddenly got 'sick' and couldn't make it. They knew people would try to blame Berke for doing it, which is why Berke called Gongora out on it at the debate at St Johns on Thursday. Your conspiracy theory about a Berke, Gongora connection couldn't be more wrong.

jonahmoriarty
jonahmoriarty

@jose.viernes @brabhamdean Still waiting for this so-called 'Jose Viernes' to state his real name and address here.

This way, when we deliver newspapers to him, we can include a slander lawsuit.

What is your REAL name and address Jose?  It's either Michael Gongora himself or Randall Hillihard, Gongora's side-kick.

Come on boys, show yourself!

hochgeboren
hochgeboren

You could go thru the campaign contributions of any and every candidate for the Miami Beach City Commission and find self-interested individuals and corporations. Yes, I t hink Randall Hilliard is the worst type of political consultant, one who lobbies after his candidates win, but what about David Custin who is running Philip Levine's campaign? He doesnt even have the 25 plus years on the Beach that Hililard has but only "arrived" after Jonah Wolfson's race and the late unregistered lobbyist AC Weinstein brought him to the Beach! And remember, Mr. Levine made MILLIONS on a city land deal, 100, no, 1000 times more than Mr. Hilliard did.

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