State Police, AG investigators search Palermo businesses - KPLC 7 News, Lake Charles, Louisiana

State Police, AG investigators search Palermo businesses

Joe Palermo's legal problems may escalate. Investigators today searched two businesses connected to Palermo as part of an ongoing investigation separate from the criminal case already in progress.

State police and officials with the Louisiana Attorney General's office and Calcasieu DA were up with with the sun and simultaneously executing search warrants at two businesses associated with Sulphur businessman Joe Palermo.  In Lake Charles they were at LP Gaming.  In Sulphur, they were at Palermo Real Estate.

Assistant District Attorney Hugo Holland confirms what they're doing but is tight lipped about the details:

"The attorney general and the state police have been working jointly on this investigation for some time. All I can say is it's an ongoing investigation and it's obviously being taken very seriously by State Police, the attorney general," said Holland.

The Calcasieu DA's office had Holland there providing legal advice to the police, who were doing the search. They won't say what the investigation is about, but they confirm it doesn't deal with the current charges pending against Palermo.

"Nothing's been removed. What I can tell you is the judge signed the order to remove certain items if we find them and that's what the state police are doing right now is looking for the items that the judge ordered us to find and seize," said Holland.

Attorneys for Palermo are gearing up for the current pending case against him. Karl Koch, one of his attorneys, has this reaction to the search:

"The prosecution of Joe Palermo is in just utter disarray at this point. The state is scrambling around to try to salvage what's left of this prosecution. John DeRosier spent more time in the courtroom on this case than he has on any other. You've seen him present for every hearing,all the time on, what, on its face, is a minor set of charges. This is a personality driven case and a vendetta by John DeRosier," said Koch..

We contacted DeRosier who says he has no vendetta against anyone he prosecutes. DeRosier says he's just trying to do his job.

The Calcasieu District Attorney's Office and Palermo and his lawyers face off in court tomorrow on various issues in the criminal case involving alleged forgery and possession of stolen things.

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