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EdPDLaw Editorial
February 3, 2017


NJ.com has done an article on the return of Oscar Aviles to work for Hudson County.  They reported his title as "Deputy Assistant Administrator".  It should be noted that an OPRA request filed with the County in September of 2016 shows his title as "confidential assistant".  Click to view profile.

It should also be noted that not only was the position not advertised or approved by the Freeholders, Aviles does not have a contract outlining his duties in his 6 figure position and has somehow maintained his 27 years seniority.  View email from County here.  While the newspapers reported all the reasons for hiring him, they neglected to report on what his responsibilities in his new title are.  Since he has no Contract there is no way to determine what those duties are and whether they are the same as when he was the Director of Corrections which would preclude him from collecting his pension.

View NJ.com Article.

EdPDLaw Editorial
UPDATED January 22, 2016


That is completely crazy and someone should lose their job over this.  The County paid the law firm of LeClair Ryan $50,000.00 to complete an investigation into this incident.  An investigation which should have been conducted by the Prosecutor's Office FOR FREE.  After all there was a criminal sexual assault.  LeClair Ryan found that the assault occurred and Ricky Aviles was charged Administratively, found guilty and received a very short suspension, like a week or 9 days which the County classified as a demotion.

The County then pays a different law firm, Chasan Leyner close to $740,000.00 to redo the same investigation.  All the witnesses were interviewed by LeClair Ryan in the $50,000 investigation.  Disgusting waste of taxpayer's money!  And this law firm only bills at a rate of $135.00 an hour, they are billing up to 7 attorneys on the same file, just to settle the suit.   Ricky Aviles is retired and living in Florida.  They should have arrested and fired him.

Chasan Leyner Legal Fees from 7/2013 through 12/1/2015

July 2013 $15,686.57
 August 2013 $20,472.91
October 2013 $16,652.26
January 2014 $ 30,477.21
February 2014 $18,099.26
March 2014  $29,424.44
April 2014  $15,705.14
May 2014  $21,110.45
June 2014  $20,610.88
July 2014  $31,070.50
August 2014  $18,529.47
September 2014  $45,690.04
October 2014  $61,024.28
November 2014  $28,384.02
December 2014 $36,015.18
January 2015 $38,560.95
February 2015 $24,451.29
March 2015 $15,403.95
April 2015 $8,108.12
May 2015 $15,187.78
June 2015 $36,438.01
July 2015 $29,479.54
August 2015 $8,269.41
September 2015 $10,378.92
October 2015 $23,937.69
November 2015 $6,834.67
December 2015
January 2016

**Grand Total for legal fees including LeClair Ryan, "General Investigation", Ricardo's Attorney and the above partial Legal Fees from Chasan Leyner:  $792,107.73

** It should be noted that the investigation into this matter began in 2010, Chasan Leyner billed this matter under a category they called "General" until actually opening a separate file for Ricardo Aviles.  Those charges and charges prior to 2013 are not listed above.  It should also be noted that Ricardo Aviles had a separate attorney to look out for his personal interest, those charges are also not listed above.  Lastly the charges for the LeClair Ryan Investigation are also not listed in the above table.  

EdPDLaw Editorial
January 18, 2015



EdPDLaw obtained the itemized invoices for monies spent on Attorney's Fees in the Helen Ford case at the same time we obtained the Aviles/SM Invoices.   Click to view OPRA request.  Helen Ford has been in suit with the County since 2006.  She won her OAL appeals and was ordered reinstated with back pay in 2008. (We did not obtain those figures).  On October 17, 2007 she also filed a gender discrimination and retaliation case against the County in U.S. District Court which is still ongoing.  For the purpose of this story we are only using the billing from May 2012 on both cases for the comparison. 

This story will highlight the unfair treatment received because of nepotism and the ridiculous amount of monies spent on attorney's fees for Ricardo Aviles in hopes that someone will step in and put a stop to it.

The total spent on the Aviles matter from 5/2012 and not including the December 2014 billing is: $489,344.88.

The total spent on the Ford matter from 5/2012 and not including the November/December 2014 billing is: $92,129.75.

Both these cases are women alleging harassment/discrimination/retaliation.

The below table reflects a sample of the billing in each case, be aware that in the Helen Ford case, the County paid 2 law firms for the defense.  One to defend the Director and one to defend the County, we added both bills together for use in the table.  To be fair we are going to use the same dates:

Billing by month:  

July 2013 $15,686.57 $1,774.84
 August 2013 $20,472.91
October 2013 $16,652.26 $175.50
January 2014 $ 30,477.21 $1,043.36
February 2014 $18,099.26 $3195.5
March 2014  $29,424.44 $1,759.58
April 2014  $15,705.14 $3571.45
May 2014  $21,110.45 $17,224.32*
June 2014  $20,610.88 $3,021.15
July 2014  $31,070.50
August 2014  $18,529.47 $729.00
September 2014  $45,690.04* $5,192.00
October 2014  $61,024.28* $1,255.50
November 2014  $28,384.02

** Helen Ford Matter - In May 2014 Chasan Leyner billed $17,224.32 for Trial Preparation and had 3 attorneys billing on the file.

** Ricardo Aviles Matter - In September and October 2014 Chasan Leyner billed $106,714.32 for depositions and had 10 attorneys billing on the file. 


EdPDLaw Editorial
January 10, 2015


EdPDLaw obtained by OPRA request the itemized invoices for Chasan Leyner, the law firm hired to defend the civil suit brought against retired Internal Affairs Sgt. Ricardo Aviles by S.M.  M.S.  first reported being sexually assaulted in May of 2010, she thereafter reported it to the Prosecutor's Office who washed their hands of the matter.  Hudson County originally hired LeClair Ryan to conduct what was to be an independent third party investigation into the matter.  LeClair Ryan billed the County $49,697.34 for the investigation.  Aviles was brought up on charges and demoted on paper from a position he was not allowed to hold according to civil service (he would have been removed from the position regardless of the charges).   

The law suit was filed on May 15, 2012 in Hudson County Superior Court.  In June of 2012 Chasan Leyner began defending Hudson County against the suit.  As is customary with insurance companies and third party administrators, a "reserve" was placed on the suit.  

  • The "reserve" is what the company believes the suit is worth or the "liability" to the County.
  • The definition of "claim reserve" is the amount of money earmarked for the eventual payment of the claim.  The claims reserve funds are set aside for the future payment of incurred claims that have not been settled and thus represent a balance sheet liability.
  • In fact, there are "Injury Tables" and formulas used by insurance company to calculate the approximate worth of different injuries depending on the circumstances, severity and permancy of the injuries.

In this matter, you will see on the first page of the Invoice paid to Chasan Leyner:

  Insured: Hudson  Claimant S.M's  adjuster alleges sex harassment againt SO (Superior Officer) reserves $7,500

click to see invoices

I think they may have underestimated the value of the suit and costs associated with it.  I have to point out, after years of working with the casinos and third party administrators overseeing attorney billing for 7 casinos that I have never seen billing this outrageous yet alone a business or entity that would willingly payout this amount of attorney's fees on this type of claim.   

These numbers are completely ridiculous and irresponsible:

Billing for one month:

July 2013 $15,686.57
 August 2013 $20,472.91
October 2013 $16,652.26
January 2014 $ 30,477.21
February 2014 $18,099.26
March 2014  $29,424.44
April 2014  $15,705.14
May 2014  $21,110.45
June 2014  $20,610.88
July 2014  $31,070.50
August 2014  $18,529.47
September 2014  $45,690.04
October 2014  $61,024.28
November 2014  $28,384.02

Grand Total including LeClair Ryan Investigation:  $539,042.22

I think someone in the Legal Department has lost their mind!  

September 2014 they paid a $45k invoice.  Chasan Leyner had 10 attorneys billing the County for a total of 290.90 hours @135.00 an hour.  

In October 2014 Hudson paid a $61k invoice.  Chasan Leyner had 10 attorneys billing the County for a total of 395.00 hours @ 135 an hour.

All totaled approximately 30 depositions were taken, of employees who stated in their depositions that they too had been harassed or assaulted by Ricardo Aviles, that they too had filed complaints with the County about him only to have nothing done.  The County wasted 1/2 million in taxpayer's dollars to quadruple their liability by identifying other victims.

And guess who was not deposed?  The Defendant, Ricardo Aviles, who simply filed for bankruptcy and retired to Florida.

Director Oscar Aviles created this monster, the same way Deputy Director Nalls is creating Ricky's female protege, Shaniqua Nalls.

Someone needs to step in and straighten out this mess, it is clear that Oscar is not going to address it, so it falls to the Freeholders:

30:8-19. Resolution of board of chosen freeholders to take over custody of jails; filing; effect

It shall be lawful for the board of chosen freeholders of any county in this state to assume and thereafter to exercise the custody, rule, keeping and charge of the county jails in their respective counties, and of the prisoners therein, whenever any such board shall decide, by the affirmative votes of two-thirds of all its members, so to do, and shall file a certificate of such decision attested by the director and the clerk of such board, in the office of the secretary of state. When such certificate shall have been so filed, the custody, rule, keeping and charge of the county jail in such county shall be no longer in the sheriff of that county, but in the board of chosen freeholders thereof, and in such jailer, keeper or warden as they shall appoint for that purpose.

30:8-20. Warden or keeper of county jail; appointment; term; bond; removal

In any county where the board of chosen freeholders shall assume the custody, rule, keeping and charge of the county jail and of the prisoners therein, as provided by section 30:8-19 of this Title, such board shall, by the votes of a majority of all its members for the time being, appoint some fit person to be the keeper or warden of the jail or jails of the county, who shall hold his office for the term of five years and until his successor shall be appointed in his stead and shall have duly qualified and given bond. Such keeper or warden may be removed from office at any time, by the affirmative votes of two-thirds of all the members of the board of chosen freeholders of the county for the time being, for good cause appearing to them. Such keeper or warden before he enters upon the discharge of the duties of his office shall give bond to such board of chosen freeholders, in such sum and with such sureties as such board shall prescribe, conditioned for the full and faithful performance of the duties of his office; provided, however, that where any county has adopted the provisions of Title 11 of the Revised Statutes (Civil Service) and the warden or keeper of the county jail has held his said office by virtue of the provisions of said Title 11 of the Revised Statutes, upon such transfer of the custody of the jail to the board of chosen freeholders, such warden in office at the time of the passage of this act, shall continue to hold his said office and enjoy tenure therein subject to all of the provisions of said Title 11 of the Revised Statutes.

or maybe the State Comptroller's Office should take another look at the billing practices of Chasan Leyner and how Hudson County Awards Contracts.  Click to review the Comptroller's last review of Chasan Leyner's billing practices.

90% of these issues are avoidable by taking some simple steps:

1.    Civil Service Testing;

2.    Merit Based Promotions;

2.    Posting Open Positions;

3.    Training of Supervisors; and

4.    Completing thorough investigations prior to making disciplinary recommendations. 

Disclaimer:  EdPdLaw is an independently owned and operated web site.  The Editorials on the site are the sole opinions of EdPDLaw and not the opinion of Hudson County PBA Local #109.  PBA Local #109 has its own web site which can be accessed at www.PBA109.org.

EdPDLaw Editorial
December 6, 2014

* EdPDLaw Answers Member's Anonymous Questions*


If you are member of the Hudson County Corrections Facility you are familiar with the nepotism involving the Director, Oscar Aviles and his cousin, Ricardo Aviles (Scroll down to read details).  To summarize, after becoming Director, Oscar Aviles appointed his cousin, Ricardo Aviles to the Internal Affairs Unit.  Ricardo held the position of Sgt. Correction Officer up until 8/16/2008 when he and Ariestides Lambos were given the title of Sr. Investigator Secured Facilities. No test was given prior to the provisional appointment and no one was aware of the "promotion" which came with a 5% salary increase. EdPDLaw discovered from Civil Service on February 3, 2012 the two were promoted, something not even the County Personnel Department was aware of.  Click to see Civil Service Response.

The County did not hold a test for the position until October 1, 2010, over 2 years later.  Officer Renee Felix came out 1st on the test but was never promoted, or was he? 

Click to see Test Announcement. 

Click to see entire List of officers that passed the test.

Click to see Certified list.

In 2011 Sgt. Aviles was disciplined for a 2010 incident involving a vendor, found guilty, "demoted" and moved to Work Release. Sgt. Lambos continued to serve in his title of provisional Sr. Investigator Secured Facilities. This was challenged to Civil Service who issued a decision on June 5, 2013 stating among other things:

Salary Disapproval

1.    Civil Service Commission records indicate that Ariestides Lambos is currently serving provisionally in the title of Senior Investigator Parole and Secured Facilities.

2.    There is a vacancy for the title of Senior Investigator Parole and Secured Facilities and an outstanding certification was issued on June 17, 2011 from list (PC 0797M).

3.    The certification has not been properly disposed of and the appointing authority was advised of the required date of disposition.

4.    The Certification Manager issued a Notice of Salary Disapproval to the appointing authority and afforded it an opportunity to appeal such action to the Civil Service Commission.

5.    No such appeal was taken to the Civil Service Commission, and no proper disposition of the certification was received; the salary disapproval, therefore, became a final administrative action.

6.    By not properly disposing of this certification, the appointing authority is in violation of civil service laws and rules.

In the instant matter, the appointing authority has refused to properly dispose of the certification issued to fill the vacancy occupied by a provisional employee. The appointing authority has not contested or appealed the findings of the Certification Manager, contravenes civil service laws and rules.


The Civil Service Commission orders the appointing authority to immediately dispose of the outstanding certification by making a permanent appointment of a reachable and interested eligible. Additionally, the appointing authority is ordered to immediately separate any employee currently serving provisionally pending open competitive examination procedures in the subject title. Such disposition must be filed with the Certification Manager on or before thirty (30) days from the issuance of this order. If no proper disposition is made within this time period, the Civil Service Commission orders the constructive appointment of the interested eligible.

Click to get Order (highlights added)

According to the Order issued June 5, 2013, Lambos was to be removed from the position and within 30 days, someone from the Certified List was to be given the position.  The number one candidate on the Certified List was Sgt. Renee Felix.  Although Lambos was removed from his title on May 23, 2013, no one from the certified list was promoted.  To my knowledge, Sgt. Renee Felix was never offered the position, even though Civil Service Ordered them to fill it.

Not only did Hudson County disregard the Civil Service Order to make a permanent appointment to the position of Sr. Investigator Secured Facilities from the Certified List, they completely ignored the entire Order causing Civil Service to file for enforcement.

On October 13, 2014 another Order was entered against the County fining them $10,000 for ignoring the first Order.


Therefore, it is ordered that Hudson County properly dispose of the June 17, 2011 certification of the eligible list for Senior Investigator Parole & Secured Facilities (PC0797M) within 30 days of the issuance of this decision. Additionally, for the reasons stated above, the Commission Orders the assessment of a fine in the amount of $10,000 to be paid within 30 days of the issuance of the decision.  Finally, Hudson County is ordered to immediately remit payment of the $1,000 in compliance costs that was previously assessed. 

If, at any time, Hudson County again does not adhere to the timeframes for the proper certification disposition without an approved extension of time, this matter will be referred to the Office of the Attorney General for enforcement and recovery of fines and further costs and penalties as provided by law.

This is the final administration determination in this matter.  Any further review should be pursued in a judicial forum.

Click to get Order

In usual fashion, instead of following Civil Service Rules, Hudson County would prefer to pay the fines and do as they please.  They were well aware when they appointed Aviles and Lambos (without anyone's knowledge in 2008) that they were obligated to call for a test, and then make promotions from the test, not let the two serve in a provisional capacity for five years.

In the same manner, they made a provisional appointment to Deputy Director in March 2014 and are now obligated to call for a test for the position.  To my knowledge no test has been called for yet and the 12 months will be up soon. Click to go to the Provisional Deputy Director's page.  Click to meet the family.

On that note, I am aware of a Municipal Department that called for a test, did not post it, and sent only one candidate to take the test, the one serving in the provisional title.  So, if you are interested in becoming Deputy Director, you should call Civil Service and don't take the County's word on the issue.  Remember they promoted Aviles and Lambos and no one knew about it. Any officer holding the title of Captain or Lieutenant would be eligible to take the test.

Congratulations to Sr. Investigator Sgt. Renee Felix who it appears was appointed to the permanent title of Senior Investigator Parole & Secured Facilities (PC0797M) by Civil Service in June 2013.  (That is a 5% salary increase for 17 months that they owe him.)

Disclaimer:  EdPdLaw is an independently owned and operated web site.  The Editorials on the site are the sole opinions of EdPDLaw and not the opinion of Hudson County PBA Local #109.  PBA Local #109 has its own web site which can be accessed at www.PBA109.org.


EdPDLaw Editorial

SEPTEMBER 29, 2014


Sgt. Ricardo Aviles, the Directors nephew, quietly puts in for his pension while in the midst of litigation with a vendor who alleges being sexually assault by Aviles while he was on duty acting in his official capacity.  While depositions of multiple employees in the case are ongoing, the accused, Ricardo Aviles has yet to testify claiming bankruptcy protection from deposition while trying to quietly retire undetected to Florida.  

click to view pension agenda

Sgt. Ricardo Aviles' date of hire is 9/20/1994, his suspensions and furloughs, together with any leave time he has taken (and there has been PLENTY!) should be deducted from his accumulated time in service, yet the Pension Board is showing that he is eligible to retire on October 1, 2014..... 

click here for Pension Guidelines which may apply


EdPDLaw Editorial

MARCH 18, 2013


Hudson County just cannot bring itself to do the right thing when it comes to Director Aviles cousin, Ricardo Aviles.  Despite all the headaches he has created for the Department, despite being found guilty of sexual harassment resulting in a false demotion and the pending law suit, he still has a cushy position in work release.  The Civil Service Department reports that he has not been removed from the promotional lists and is still next in line for promotion to Lieutenant.  He also remains on the promotional list to Sr. Investigator.  The County has denied promotions to officers who have received minor discipline and are now reading a "Work Environment Advisory" as part of their employee evaluations telling everyone there is a "Zero Tolerance Policy" for sexual harassment.  Yet they have not removed Aviles from the promotional lists.

Click to view current promotional list to Lieutenant

Click to view current promotional list to Sr. Investigator Secured Facilities

EdPDLaw Editorial
December 10, 2012



Click here to read a portion of the report.

Just so we are on the same page - the County paid the law firm of LeClair Ryan over $60,000.00 to investigate a complaint of sexual harassment by its Internal Affairs Investigator, Ricardo Aviles, who just so happens to be the cousin of the Director or Corrections, Oscar Aviles.

By way of background, Oscar Aviles was appointed by County Executive, Thomas DeGise to the civilian position of Director of Correction in 2004.  Shortly thereafter the Director appointed his cousin, Ricardo Aviles to a supervisory position in Internal Affairs.  At the time of Ricardo's appointment, he was working as a Sergeant in the jail on the midnight shift.

Sgt. Ricardo Aviles and Sgt. Aristiedes Lambos were both appointed as supervisory personnel in Internal Affairs together with a handful of corrections officers who were assigned from the jail to Internal Affairs.  In 2005 the County called for a test for those who wanted to be permanently assigned to Internal Affairs, a position that would permanently change their titles from Correction Officer to Investigator, Secured Facilities. 21 officers and supervisors passed the test.  The list was certified, candidates interviewed and "promotions" were made to 6 officers changing their title from Correction Officer to Investigator.

In 2010,  the victim came forward and bravely reported what ocurred, the Hudson County Authorities, in a ridiculous stunt to cheat the taxpayers out of thousands of dollars, ordered a bogus investigation which ate up thousands of taxpayers money.  Unbeknownst to the County, the law firm of LeClair Ryan fulfilled its obligation to the taxpayers and recommended the TERMINATION of Ricardo Aviles from his position only to be thwarted by the Adminastration. They quickly devised a false "demotion" and created a position for Aviles in Work Release.  The Superior Officer's Union took the County to Arbitration as they never posted the newly created position.  The Arbitrator ruled against the County and told them they had to post the position.  The County openly defied the Arbitrator and still refused to post the position.  This caused the Superior Officers Union to take the County back to court to get yet another ruling against them telling them THEY HAVE TO POST THE POSITION.





Congratulations to PBA 109A in their win over the County and Award placing the position created for Ricardo Aviles in Work Release up for bid.  Anyone wishing to read the award may do so by clicking here.   Another crash and burn for the dynamic duo of Eady & Nalls.

  Click to get Ricky's Civil Suit
EdPDLaw Editorial
March 6, 2012
Director's Cousin, Ricardo Aviles' Assignment to Work Release Clearly an Act of Nepotism, Misappropriation of Taxpayer's Money, HCDOC Not Reporting to Civil Service, Falsely Reporting to PBA

The never ending saga involving Oscar Aviles, Director of Corrections and his cousin, Ricardo Aviles continues as the Director refuses to take corrective action against his cousin despite his being found guilty of sexual misconduct and misappropriation of county property.  

By way of background, Oscar Aviles was appointed by County Executive, Thomas DeGise to the civilian position of Director of Correction in 2004.  Shortly thereafter the Director appointed his cousin, Ricardo Aviles to a supervisory position in Internal Affairs.  At the time of Ricardo's appointment, he was working as a Sergeant in the jail on the midnight shift.

Sgt. Ricardo Aviles and Sgt. Aristiedes Lambos were both appointed as supervisory personnel in Internal Affairs together with a handful of corrections officers who were assigned from the jail to Internal Affairs.  In 2005 the County called for a test for those who wanted to be permanently assigned to Internal Affairs, a position that would permanently change their titles from Correction Officer to Investigator, Secured Facilities. 21 officers and supervisors passed the test.  The list was certified, candidates interviewed and "promotions" were made to 6 officers changing their title from Correction Officer to Investigator.


At this time, the position was offered to Sgt. Aviles, Sgt. Lambos and Sgt. Moreno who all "WITHDREW FROM CONSIDERATION, BASED UPON REDUCTION IN RANK/SALARY".  Sgt. Levine and Lt. Rivera were "DEFERRED, BASED UPON REDUCTION IN RANK/SALARY".  However, the Department of Corrections allowed Sgt. Aviles and Sgt. Lambos to stay in their supervisory titles and remain in Internal Affairs out of title.  Shortly thereafter Internal Affairs broke away from the PBA and created its own FOP bargaining unit where it negotiated a 5% salary increase incentive for those assigned to Internal Affairs.  Both Aviles and Lambos were allowed to remain in Internal Affairs, out of title, and both received the 5% salary incentive.


Sometime after their appointment to Internal Affairs, both Sergeant Aviles and Sergeant Lambos received a title change to Sr. Investigator.  No one is certain how that occurred and it is still being investigated.  Aviles and Lambos also created their own Superior Officers FOP Bargaining Unit which only had 2 members, Aviles and Lambos.

In May of 2010, Sgt. Aviles was accused of assaulting a female vendor.  The incident was reported to the Prosecutor's Office who refused to investigate.  It was then turned over to the law firm of LeClair Ryan who was paid more than $50,000.00 of taxpayer's money to investigate the incident which should have been investigated by the Prosecutor's Office at no cost to the taxpayers.  

The investigation was concluded in June of 2011 and on August 1, 2011 charges were brought against Aviles for:

1.    Incompetency

2.    Conduct Unbecoming a Public Employee

3.    Neglect of Duty

4.    Insubordination

5.    Misuse of Public Property

6.    Sexual Harassment; and

7.    Other Sufficient Cause

Count I - At various and sundry times and locations, Ricardo Aviles, Senior Investigator, Parole & Secured facilities, county's office of the Internal Affairs, engaged in communications in person and/or via phone, E-mail, electronic texting and other means with and/or directed to VICTIM'S NAME AND EMPLOYER REDACTED, which were offensive, noxious, demeaning, sexually provocative, unprofessional and violative of county policy,  procedures, state administrative code and law governing conduct and department of law enforcement officers, as well as public employees generally.

Count II -  On or about May 25, 2010, Senior Investigator Aviles, during County time and on County premises, did engage in conduct, actions and words calculated to and which did embarrass, harass, annoy and demean VICTIMS NAME REDACTED and did, without license or consent, offensively touch, grope and kiss her while she was in his office at the Meadowview Complex in Secaucus, New Jersey.  This constituted violation of law as aforesaid, and as more specifically found in the Rules and Regulations of the Hudson County Department of Corrections, including but not limited to the following sections and provisions.

A. 1,2,3,4,12,13,14,15,16,18,19

B. 1,2,6,10,11,12,15,16,19,20,22,23,24,25,27

Chapter 1 General Rules 1.1. Loyalty

1.3 Conduct Unbecoming 1.5 Integrity 1.6 Courtesy; 1.7 compliance and orders 1.10 Discipline A) (1) unethical behavior; (2) Conduct unbecoming; (3) incompetence 1.5 misfeasance of duty D) Neglect of Duty (1 a-d) E) Disobedience of orders (1)

Chapter 2 Misrepresentation or falsification

Chapter 3

3.4      Obedience to Laws & Rules

3.5      Duty Responsibilities

3.6      Reporting Violation of Law

3.7      Standards of Conduct

3.8      Violations of Standards of Conduct

3.12    Conduct toward the public

3.15    Insubordination

3.20    Misuse of authority

3.40    Disparaging Language

The County held 2 days of hearings before Hearing Officer, Guttenberg Mayor Gerald Drasheff.  The victim was made to sit in a waiting area for in excess of 4 hours before being called to testify.  She was not permitted to have an attorney present and was made to sit next to Ricardo Aviles while she testified.  The 2 witnesses who were present when the incident occurred were never called to testify.  

Despite the County's best efforts to clear Aviles, in January Hearing Officer Drasheff issued his decision admirably finding Aviles guilty and allegedly recommending a demotion.

However, not wanting to demote Ricardo Aviles, the Department of Corrections instead transferred Ricardo Aviles out of Internal Affairs and created a position for him in Work Release.

Prior to Aviles removal from Internal Affairs and "temporary appointment" to Work Release,  Work Release was staffed by 2 Correction Officers, 1 Lieutenant, one civilian Managerial Specialist and a civilian Clerk.  The total costs of salaries for Work Release, prior to the addition of Aviles, breaks down as follows:  



On September 12, 2011, Work Release monitored 5 bracelets and 2 inmates on work release for a total of 7 inmates.  Clearly, at the time of his temporary assignment there was no need for additional personnel in Work Release.  Sgt. Aviles added another $101,580 to the yearly expense of Work Release bringing the total to $470,792 not including overtime, to monitor 7 inmates.

On January 14, 2012 the charges against Aviles were sustained.  His "punishment" allegedly was a "demotion" from Sr Investigator to Sergeant in Work Release.  Here is where the Director of Corrections slaps the County Executive and the Hearing Officer in the face.

Instead of "demoting" his cousin, the Director had him transferred from Internal Affairs to Work Release and allegedly took away the 5% incentive he was receiving, thus calling it a "demotion".

Truth be told, there have been numerous officers that have worked in Internal Affairs and transferred back to the jail, at least 13 corrections officers, including supervisors.  They received the 5% salary incentive and the provisional title of Investigator when they were assigned to Internal Affairs. When they left Internal Affairs and returned to the jail, they lost the 5% salary incentive and signed off on a "Voluntary Demotion" to return to the title of Corrections Officer. NONE OF THEM RECEIVED A "DISCIPLINARY DEMOTION".

Civil Service mandates that in order to get back in title from Investigator to Corrections Officer, the officer would need to sign off on a VOLUNTARY DEMOTION, Reason Codes including 003, 005 or 022 which is not discipline but a TRANSFER of TITLE and public record.  DISCIPLINARY DEMOTIONS are classified as DISCIPLINE, Reason Code 007, and subject to punishment, fines, suspensions, etc. They are also used to reduce promotional scores and disqualify candidates from promotional list. They are considered by the Courts when accessing progressive discipline in future proceedings.

Moreover, everyone who leaves Internal Affairs must receive a "demotion" to get back in title and they lose the 5% salary incentive.  

Civil Service has NO RECORD of Aviles being demoted, either "VOLUNTARY" or "DISCIPLINE", and shows his current title as Sr. Investigator since August 15, 2008.  There have been no changes reported to his title.  Aviles has represented to the State PBA that he is no longer a Sr Investigator, that he has been DEMOTED to a Sergeant and requested entry into the PBA Superior Officers' Union.  Aviles request was denied until he presents proof of the change in title which he has not done.  Instead, he stated that the Department of Corrections Personnel Department (Anthony Staltari) would verify the demotion.  

Department of Corrections Personnel Officer, Anthony Staltari, would be responsible for generating or "regenerating" the paperwork to notify Civil Service of any change in title, demotion or discipline.  This obviously did not occur despite it being almost 2 months since the decision was issued and Aviles' claimed he was demoted.  

HCDOC then permanently assigned the Director's cousin to Work Release instead of placing him in the jail which lost 4 Sergeants over the past 2 years and generated in excess of $250,000.00 in 2011 in overtime from the Sergeants.  Prior to Aviles assignment to Work Release there was not a Sergeant assigned to Work Release.  The position was created specifically for Aviles, it was not posted and opened up to the other Sergeants as agreed upon in the Collective Bargaining Agreement, nor were promotions made from the current Sergeants list.  This will lead the County to incur additional costs (on top of what the cover-up already ran them) to defend the grievances filed by the Unions.  There is also a civil suit expected to be filed by the victim.

2011 OVERTIME RECORD FOR THE SERGEANTS reflect the following figures which list the number of Sergeants assigned to each shift and the total amount of overtime generated by the Sergeants per shift: (Records are only for Sergeants and do not include overtime for the Correction Officers).

DAY SHIFT 16 1770.62 $122,071.72 2
2ND SHIFT 10 477.50 $ 32,842.55 1
*MIDNIGHT SHIFT 9 1248.69 $ 96,280.78 1
TOTAL 35 3496.81 $251,195.05 4

* 2 Sergeants each received over $30,000 in overtime.


LIEUTENTANT 1 32.93 $2,381.41 0

Clearly there was no need to create a Sergeants position in Work Release when the jail was short 4 Sergeants and generating $251,195.05  in total overtime by the Sergeants alone.  (This figure does not include overtime generated by the Correction Officers or those above the rank of Sgt.).  Ricardo Aviles' assignment to the jail would have cut the overtime by more than 1/3.  His 2011 salary was $101,579.92.

A typical Sergeant in the jail is responsible for overseeing 12 - 20 Correction Officers and approximately 360 - 720 inmates.

As of the last weekend in February 2012, there was not one single inmate on work release - ZERO - and only 12 inmates wearing ankle monitors.

The Hudson County Department of Correction's refusal to take appropriate disciplinary action against Ricardo Aviles sends a clear message to all County employees that sexual misconduct will not only be tolerated but covered up and rewarded.  The County has appropriated approximately $500,000.00 in no bid contracts in 2012 to law firms to supposedly detect, prevent, and correct sexual harassment, discrimination, etc.  (Resolutions *16 - *21, LeClair Ryan, Scarinci & Hollenbeck, Chasan Leyner).  

The County spent in excess of $50,000.00 of taxpayer's money, hired a Hearing Officer who admirably sustained the charges against Ricardo Aviles and still the Department of Corrections did exactly as they pleased mocking the County Executive, Thomas DeGise, the Hearing Officer, Guttenberg Mayor Gerald Drasheff, the Freeholders and the taxpayers.

The Hudson County Department of Corrections has a Zero Tolerance Policy against Sexual Harassment.                         

EdPDLaw Editorial
February 8, 2012

County Attorney's Reporting Charges of Sexual Misconduct Sustained Against Ricardo Aviles Title Unknown at this time for Hudson County Director's Cousin 

The long awaited decision in the Ricardo Aviles matter has been issued.  The attorneys for the matter have issued a statement that the charges against Aviles have been sustained and that he has been disciplined.  His office in Internal Affairs has been emptied and he is currently referring to himself as a "Sergeant" in Work Release. The Personnel Department from the Correctional Facility has stated that he received a "demotion".  An OPRA request submitted to the Hudson County Personnel Department on January 30, 2012 for Aviles title and salary information remains over due and unanswered.  Aviles has made application to the Superior Officers Union for membership as he can no longer be a part of the Internal Affairs Bargaining Unit which represents investigators.

However, Civil Service still has him listed as a Sr Investigator Secured Facilities, a promotion given to him in August of 2008.  It was already revealed that there was no test given prior to 2008.  In fact, no one knew about the promotion.  The test was announced on October 1, 2010.  Ricardo Aviles took the test placing tied for 2nd.

Prior to Aviles "temporary" assignment to Work Release, there was no Sergeant's position in Work Release.  The County has now created a new position in Work Release.  They assigned Aviles there without posting the position to the other Sergeants.  They also did not promote from the Sergeants list to fill the newly created position which should have been opened up to the PBA members on the current list.

Civil Service Rules state:

4A:4-7.9 Resignation/New Appointment

(a) A permanent employee who is appointed from an open competitive list to a title in a different organizational unit within the same governmental jurisdiction shall be considered to have resigned from the previous permanent title.

(b) The employee may request placement on the regular reemployment list for the previous title.

In other words, Aviles surrendered his position as Sergeant when he accepted the promotion to Sr Investigator by signing the CAMPS form in 2008.  If he did indeed receive a demotion, he can no longer be a superior officer and his correct title is either Investigator or Corrections Officer. He can request to be placed on the regular reemployment list for Sergeant, if one exists. This presents another issue for Aviles, he is currently on the lieutenants promotional list.

It is anticipated that the County will try to say that his appointment was provisional, however, N.J.S.A. 11a:4-13(b) states:

11A:4-13. Types of appointment.

11A:4-13. Types of appointment. The commission shall provide for the following types of appointment:

a. Regular appointments shall be to a title in the competitive division of the career service upon examination and certification or to a title in the noncompetitive division of the career service upon appointment. The appointments shall be permanent after satisfactory completion of a working test period;

b. Provisional appointments shall be made only in the competitive division of the career service and only in the absence of a complete certification, if the appointing authority certifies that in each individual case the appointee meets the minimum qualifications for the title at the time of appointment and that failure to make a provisional appointment will seriously impair the work of the appointing authority. In no case shall any provisional appointment exceed a period of 12 months;

In other words, if the County asserts that he was "provisional" they needed to call for the test by August 15, 2009.  They waited 26 months to call for the test.   So that makes him a Sergeant prior to the demotion, so now he is a corrections officer?

As far as Work Release goes, an assignment to Work Release is a prime position outside of the jail, it is in no way a disciplinary assignment.  Numerous officers apply and grieve to receive the position where they are not inside the jail.  It is probably a better assignment than Internal Affairs.  The County has taken the position that assigning Aviles inside the jail would be "too dangerous".  Yet, they have no problem assigning their pregnant officers not only inside the jail but inside the housing units with 60 or more inmates.  Maybe they could assign a pregnant officer to protect Aviles...... 

So how does all this go undetected for so long?  We have not yet determined who came up with the idea but we have determined that it could not have been executed without the assistance and cooperation of Correctional Department Personnel Officer Anthony Staltari who prepares, files and guards the CAMPS forms. He provides information from the Corrections Department to both Civil Service and the Hudson County Personnel Department.  As long as neither Department is aware of what the other is doing, everything appears to be ok.  In fact, the County Personnel Department has been kept in the dark the entire time and  as of February 18, 2011 only shows Aviles title as Sgt. County Corrections since 4/19/2003.  I guess Staltari forgot to inform his supervisors of the change..............

So what is Aviles' current title?  Your guess is as good as mine.  Apparently, if you are part of the Good Old Boys network you can create your own.  EdPDLaw is currently looking into the questionable title and pension information supplied for Confidential Aide Kirk Eady who has dubbed himself a "Deputy Director".

EdPDLaw Editorial
November 9, 2011

Hudson County Holds 2nd Half of Departmental Hearing for  "Sergeant" Ricardo Aviles Today

EdPDLaw keeps a watchful eye on Hudson County to see if they will in fact discipline Sr. Investigator Ricardo Aviles as the 2nd half of his Departmental Hearing was held today in Secaucus.  Hudson County has hired Guttenberg Mayor Gerald Drasheff to act as the Hearing Officer.  The 1st day of the Hearing was held on October 12, 2011, when the victim and Risk Management Personnel testified.  It has been reported that the victim was made to wait over 3 hours before her testimony was taken perhaps in hopes that she would be intimidated and leave.

The 2nd half of the hearing, originally scheduled for October 13, 2011 was moved to today as not to interfere with yesterday's elections.  Witnesses called to testify today included members of the Internal Affairs Unit.  Conveniently, the witnesses for the victim were never called and the decision will be made without the benefit of their testimony.   It is unknown if Mayor Drasheff was made aware that he was only being supplied with the information Hudson County wanted him to have.  Clearly he cannot make an informed decision without the testimony of all the witnesses and is manipulated by the partial evidence submitted.  This will undoubtedly effect his decision.

Hudson County has wasted countless taxpayers dollars protecting Aviles.  Sources report that his cousin, Director Oscar Aviles is pressuring to have the charges dismissed as he wants to promote his cousin to Lieutenant.  Ricardo Aviles is number 7 on the Lieutenants list and Hudson County would need to bypass officers to get to him.  The Union has already been approached and promotional paperwork already begun last week, before the Departmental Hearing was even convened today.

In the meantime, Aviles remains hidden in a choice position in Work Release and is still on the roster as a member of Internal Affairs.

EdPDLaw Editorial
September 16, 2011

Civil Service Records Confirm that "Sergeant" Ricardo Aviles has not been a Sergeant since August 15, 2008

EdPDLaw continues to unravel the web of deceit in Hudson County obtaining information directly from Civil Service which shows that "Sgt." Aviles has not been a Sergeant since August 15, 2008.  Civil Service records show that 8/15/2008 was the last day that Ricardo Aviles held the title of Sergeant. On 8/16/2008 Ricardo Aviles' title changed to Senior Investigator Parole & Secured Facilities the title which he holds to date.

Apparently, no one let the Hudson County Personnel Department in on the change of title. Records obtained through OPRA Request directly from Hudson County show Aviles title as "Sergeant County Corrections" from April 19, 2003 to the present.

Even more suspicious, the County posted the position of Sr. Investigator last year and Aviles took the test for the title he already holds.  He came out tied for second on the list.  The list was recently certified and interviews were subsequently held.  Why would Aviles test for a position he already holds? How did Aviles test to be a Lt. if he is not a Sgt.?  Who is helping him?  He could not call for a test, take and pass a test, interview and promote himself.....

When did they post the Announcement for the test in 2007?  Did they post the test? Who took it? How did they pay him in 2010 for attending a FOP Convention as a representative of the Superior Officers Union when he has not been a Superior Officer since 2008? I'm getting confused!

According to Civil Service he is required to attend the Academy and be qualified to carry a firearm. According to his schedule, he has not attended the Academy and is on the "Do Not Arm List".

EdPDLaw Editorial
September 12, 2011

EdPDLaw files Suit for the Release of the Aviles Investigation, Hudson County continues to Cover for Director's Cousin, Sgt. Ricardo Aviles  by Creating a Position in Work Release and Allowing Him to use over $9,700 worth of Vacation & Personal Time He Does Not Have

EdPDLaw has filed a Complaint with the Court to obtain a copy of the Investigative Report issued by the law firm of LeClair Ryan. LeClair Ryan was hired by the County of Hudson to investigate the allegations against Sgt. Ricardo Aviles of sexually assaulting a female vendor in May of 2010.  According to the itemized billing obtained by EdPDLaw, the investigation lasted a year and cost the taxpayers in excess of $50,000.

Upon information and belief, Sgt. Ricardo Aviles was brought up on disciplinary charges on or about August 5, 2011. A Loudermill hearing was held the following week and the hearing officer (paid by the County) deemed Sgt. Ricardo Aviles fit for duty and placed him back to work after a brief suspension.  He is currently on the "Do Not Arm" list and it is unknown at this time if he was made to submit to a Fitness for Duty Exam and cleared by a physician to return to work or if the Hearing Officer took it upon himself to make that determination.  His Schedule indicates that he used sick leave for the 2 weeks preceeding his suspension and as such should have been required to submit a physician's certification as to his fitness for duty.

    Sgt. Aviles has been removed from Internal Affairs and hidden in Work Release pending his Departmental Hearing which is expected to convene later this month.  Currently Work Release has 2 full time Corrections Officers, 1 Lieutenant, a Clerk and a Managerial Specialist that retired and was brought back as a Consultant.  The breakdown of their salaries is as follows:

Officer A        2010 Base Salary                         $ 82,561        

Officer B        2010 Base Salary                         $ 82,761

Lieutenant    2010 Base Salary                         $100,280 

Managerial Specialist   2009 Base Salary      $ 76,438

Civilian Clerk   2010 Base Salary                     $ 27,172

TOTAL                                                                    $369,212         TOTAL INMATES TO BE MONOTORED:     7

Work Release, prior to the addition of Sgt. Aviles, was costing the County approximately $369,212 a year.  They monitor 5 bracelets and 2 inmates on work release for a total of 7 inmates.  Clearly, there was no need for additional personnel in Work Release.  Sgt. Aviles adds another $101,580 to the yearly expense of Work Release bringing the total to $480,792 not including overtime, to monitor 7 inmates.

Had the County planned or intended to assign a Sergeant to Work Release, they would have no need to bring the retired Managerial Specialist back as a consultant.  

    There is every indication from the County's prior handling of Sgt. Aviles and his relationship with the Director of Corrections that they will attempt to exonerate Sgt. Aviles at the Departmental Hearing and promote him.  He is currently on both the Lieutenant's Promotional List and the promotional list for Sr. Investigator.

EdPDLaw has obtained a copy of Aviles Schedule for 2011 which indicates that he was in fact suspended on August 5, 2011 through August 12, 2011.  The County either hired a Hearing Officer or used a County employee as a Hearing Officer to issue a finding allowing Sgt. Aviles to continue to work while waiting for his Department Hearing instead of remaining on suspension.  The County does have the option of hiring a retired Judge to use as the hearing officer as opposed to using one of its employees who may be subject to retaliation.

According to the Schedule, Sgt. Aviles' last suspension day was Friday, August 12, 2011.  On Monday, August 15, 2011, the schedule shows Aviles back on the payroll, on vacation for the next 5 days.  The problem is, he has no vacation time left.  According to records supplied by Hudson County, Sgt. Aviles is allotted 25 vacation days per year. He used his 25th vacation day on June 21, 2011. August 15th was Sgt. Aviles' 32 vacation day this year.  As of September 1st, 2011 Sgt. Aviles has used 37 vacation days this year.  In other words, so far this year, he was paid for an additional 12 vacation days which he does not have.  

Sgt. Aviles has also used 14 of his 15 sick days.  He was out sick for 11 consecutive days, from July 18, 2011 through August 4, 2011.  It is unknown whether, per Department Policy, he supplied a doctor's note for this absence.  

EdPDLaw has also obtained a copy of Sgt. Aviles 2010 Schedule which indicates that Sgt. Ricardo Aviles used 33 vacation days in 2010.  Again, according to the records supplied by the County, Sgt. Aviles is only allotted 25 vacation days per year.  He used an additional 8 days that he does not have.  He also used all his allotted sick time for the year, 15 days and 5 personal days.  Sgt. Aviles is only allotted 3 personal days per year.

Similarly, in 2009, Aviles used 22 vacation days when he was only entitled to 20 days and 4 personal days when he should have only received 3.

As of this date, according to the Schedules, Sgt. Aviles has been paid for 22 vacation days and 3 personal days he does not have.  Sgt. Aviles 2010 Base Salary is $101,580.  That amounts to approximately $9,767.31.

EdPDLaw first requested the time records in October of 2010.   Oscar Aviles, Sgt. Aviles cousin, was promoted to Director of Corrections in 2004.  In 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008 and 2009, Sgt. Ricardo Aviles has not used one single sick day. EdPDLaw first requested time records in October 2010 and in November of 2010 Sgt. Aviles used his first sick day in 5 years.  He then used his entire years allotment of sick days, 15 in total, in November and December of 2010.  Prior to November 2010, Sgt. Aviles accumulated over 1000 hours of sick time which he will be able to cash out at retirement. Vacation time is not permitted to be carried over from year to year.  Vacation time for officers other than Aviles, if not used during the year is lost.

It appears that Sgt. Aviles is permitted to do whatever he wants without any oversight.  The Hudson County Department of Corrections docks their Correction Officers if they are even a single minute late.  They are also subject to discipline and fines for being late that same minute.  The Union has to grieve for its officers to be paid in accordance with their contract as the time keepers short the officers for the overtime they have worked.  

Who is responsible for keeping the time in Hudson County?  As a Sergeant, Aviles should be made to answer to at least 3 supervisors, a Lieutenant, Captain and Deputy Director, who is overseeing his time?  Who is overseeing the Department of Corrections?  Fortunately for Aviles, he answers to no one because his cousin is the Director of Corrections, Oscar Aviles.  He does as he pleases and gets away with everything and anything because the County will go to any lengths to protect him. 

 As of this point in time they have:

  • Spent approximately $50,000 of taxpayer's money on a third party investigation which should have been conducted at no cost by the Prosecutor's Office.
  • Created a position for Aviles in Work Release which was already overstaffed.
  • Allowed him to be a no show at work and according to his schedule, paid him for vacation and personal time that he does not have over a span of 3 consecutive years for a total of over $9,700. 
Currently, Hudson County does not have a Nepotism Policy in place.
Check back soon for the next Hudson County Editorial: Treatment of Pregnant Officers
EdPDLaw Editorial Update:
August 10, 2011
EdPDLaw Editorial
July 17, 2011


The Hudson County Legal Department has hired the law firm of LeClair Ryan to conduct an investigation into a criminal complaint filed by a female vendor in June of 2010.   The victim reported that on May 25, 2010 she was sexually assaulted by Internal Affairs Sgt. Ricardo Aviles in his office while he was on duty.  The Complaint was turned over to the Hudson County Prosecutor's Office who's only action was to issue a Cease & Desist Order.  

Since June of 2010, no action has been taken against Sgt. Aviles.  The frustrated victim contacted the Prosecutor's Office and repeatedly requested to file criminal charges both in August of 2010, and again in March of 2011. No charges were filed and no action was taken against Sgt. Aviles, the cousin of Oscar Aviles, Director of Corrections.

The victim repeatedly contacted both the Prosecutor’s Office and the Hudson County Department of Personnel requesting that some type of action be taken against her assailant. In June of 2011 she was told by a Detective in the Prosecutor's Office that the criminal investigation was on hold waiting for the outcome of the investigation by the private law firm.  The Prosecutor’s Office did not bring charges against the accused, they did not present the case to a grand jury or take any action on the victim’s behalf.

Instead they opted to not bring charges.  They protected the accused by assuring that a jury would never hear the case or be afforded the opportunity to determine his guilt or innocence.  

They relied upon an investigation conducted by a private law firm paid for by Hudson County, the accused's employer.  

The matter was not presented to a grand jury.  The victim was not afforded protections outlined in the Attorney Generals Standards for Providing Services to Victims of Sexual Assault. The Prosecutor would not prosecute the accused thereby protecting him. 

The victim has cooperated with both the Prosecutor’s Office and the Hudson County Department of Personnel by supplying emails and text messages evidencing the harassment.  The County hired the law firm of LeClair Ryan to conduct an independent investigation into the allegations at a price of $150.00 an hour per investigator and assigned two investigators to conduct the investigation.  At times there were up to five attorneys billing  on the investigation. The investigation should have been conducted by the Prosecutor’s Office or other appropriate law enforcement agency. 

As of June 1, 2011, Hudson County has incurred $49,697.34 in legal fees owed to the law firm of LeClair Ryan to conduct the investigation into the matter. The County used taxpayer’s monies to pay a law firm to conduct a criminal investigation which should have been conducted by the Prosecutor’s Office at no expense to the taxpayer

During this same time period, on June 10, 2010 it was reported to Abe Antun, County Administrator that Sgt. Aviles used his County vehicle to transport fencing material to his home in Jackson, NJ. He overloaded the vehicle thereby damaging same. A tow truck had to respond to Jackson and tow the vehicle back to Hudson County, the towing and repair costs on  the taxpayer. This also was referred to the Prosecutor's Office with no disciplinary action forthcoming.   

It is doubtful that this special treatment would be afforded to any other than the Director of Corrections cousin. To add insult to injury, the accused is currently on a promotional list. The County, instead of bringing criminal charges or some type of disciplinary action against the Sgt. has had the promotional list certified and is preparing to promote the accused in the very near future. 

The County, including the Director of Corrections, Prosecutors Office, and Legal Department, continuously look the other way when it comes to Sgt. Aviles, refusing to discipline him and hold him accountable for his actions.  Ironically, they have him assigned as a supervisor in the Internal Affairs Bureau where he is responsible for enforcing the Rules.

Currently, Hudson County does not have a Nepotism Policy in place.