A New Jersey-based political consultant today admitted hiring two men to kill a longtime associate who had worked for him on various political campaigns, U.S. Attorney Philip R. Sellinger announced.
Sean Caddle, 44, of Hamburg, New Jersey, pleaded guilty by videoconference before U.S. District Judge John Michael Vazquez to an information charging him with one count of conspiracy to commit murder for hire. Judge Vazquez allowed Caddle to remain out on $1 million unsecured bond, home detention with electronic monitoring and travel restrictions.
Caddle ran the Committee for Economic and Social Justice, the PAC associated with former state Senator Ray Lesniak (D-20).
“This was a callous and violent crime, and this defendant is as responsible as the two men who wielded the knife,” U.S. Attorney Sellinger said. “There is no more serious crime than the taking of another person’s life. The defendant has admitted arranging and paying for a murder by two other people. His admission of guilt means he will now pay for his crime.”
“Today’s guilty plea will bring some sense of closure to the victim’s family who have been left to wonder – for nearly eight years – who murdered their loved one,” Special Agent in Charge George M. Crouch Jr. said. “This should serve as a warning to criminals and potential criminals, alike – while you are going about your life, thinking you ‘got away with it,’ the FBI is piecing together the facts that will serve as your undoing.”
According to documents filed in this case and statements made in court:
In April of 2014, Caddle solicited one of his conspirators (identified as “CC-1”), a Connecticut resident, to commit a murder on Caddle’s behalf in exchange for thousands of dollars. CC-1 then recruited a longtime accomplice from Philadelphia (identified as “CC-2”), to join the plot.
On May 22, 2014, CC-1 and CC-2 traveled from out of state to the victim’s apartment in Jersey City. After entering the apartment, CC-1 and CC-2 stabbed the victim to death and then CC-1 set fire to the victim’s apartment.
After Caddle learned the following day that the victim had been murdered, he met CC-1 in the parking lot of a diner in Elizabeth, New Jersey. Caddle paid CC-1 thousands of dollars in exchange for the murder, and CC-1 shared a portion of those proceeds with CC-2.
Caddle faces a maximum potential penalty of life imprisonment and a $250,000 fine.
U.S. Attorney Sellinger credited special agents of the FBI, under the direction of Special Agent in Charge George M. Crouch Jr. in Newark, with the investigation leading to today’s guilty plea. He also thanked the Hudson County Prosecutor’s Office for its assistance.
The government is represented by Assistant U.S. Attorney Lee M. Cortes Jr., Chief of the U.S. Attorney’s Office Health Care Fraud Unit, and Assistant U.S. Attorney Sean Farrell, Chief of the U.S. Attorney’s Office Cybercrime Unit.
Defense counsel: Edwin J. Jacobs Esq., Atlantic City, New Jersey