William Rapfogel, former head of the Metropolitan Council on Jewish Poverty, has been released from prison. According to the Daily News, the lifelong Lower East Side resident was issued what’s known as a “merit release” on May 1.
In 2014, Rapfogel received a sentence of 3 1/3- 10 years for embezzling money from the Jewish charity. He served less than three years of that prison term. “Prison system officials,” reported the News, “said he did not have to go through a formal parole hearing as he met the eligibility requirements for “merit release” by serving five-sixths of his minimum term without incident.” He’ll remain under state parole supervision until 2024.
Since last year, Rapfogel had been on a work release program that allowed him to spend Wednesday-Sunday of each week in his own home (Rapfogel lives in the Grand Street cooperatives). The other two nights of the week, he was required to stay at the Lincoln Correctional Facility, a minimum security prison on West 110th Street.
Rapfogel was fired from the Met Council in 2013 after a $9 million insurance kickback scheme was uncovered. In addition to the prison sentence, he paid $3 million in restitution.
Rapfogel’s wife, Judy, was the longtime chief of staff to Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver before Silver was convicted on corruption charges and forced to resign. A federal appeals court threw out that conviction last week, although prosecutors have vowed to retry Silver.
Judy Rapfogel was, for a short period, working for one of Jared Kushner’s real estate companies. William Rapfogel, according to his Linkedin profile, is now a senior executive of Realty Crown, LLC, which is located in Brooklyn.