Attorney: SIST CEO released from federal custody

The Shawano Leader, Wisconsin/November 21, 2008

The CEO of SIST, Naomi Isaacson, has been released from federal custody, the woman’s attorney said Thursday afternoon.

"She is free," her attorney, Alan Eisenberg of Milwaukee, said Thursday afternoon.

A federal judge in Maryland ordered Isaacson released during an informal hearing Thursday morning, at which Eisenberg participated by phone.

But Eisenberg said he didn’t get a chance to argue for Isaacson to be freed.

"He made up his mind she was going to be released before I got on the phone," Eisenberg said.

Isaacson was arrested Nov. 14 at Shawano City Hall during a court appearance on loitering citation in municipal court. The FBI took Isaacson into custody on a federal bench warrant for contempt of court.

Eisenberg said she had been last held in Oklahoma City, following stays in jails in Brown, Milwaukee and Kenosha counties.

Attempts to confirm Isaacson’s release with The U.S. Attorney’s Office in Maryland, and the U.S. Marshals Service were not successful.

"There’s nothing public I can tell you," said Marcy Murphy, a spokeswoman for the U.S. Attorney’s Office.

Murphy said she could not discuss the matter for which Isaacson was arrested, because there’s "nothing public in the case."

A variety of matters can be handled by federal courts out of the public’s view, such as search warrants, seizure warrants, restraining orders issued to financial institutions, and other matters sealed to protect investigations or witnesses, as well as grand jury matters.

Eisenberg said the matter was a civil contempt case, apparently prompted by what the court found was an inadequate response to a subpoena. He could not describe what the case was, except to say it was proceedings in Baltimore.

"I’m not exactly positive as to what it is," Eisenberg said. "It has nothing to do with anything in Shawano or Green Bay."

Shawano Police Chief Ed Whealon last week said Isaacson’s arrest had nothing to do with the investigation of the "implied threat" to 60 people in the Shawano area.

Authorities believe a "person of interest" is connected to a list of names allegedly implying a threat against 60 Shawano area residents, three of whom authorities believe have been targeted with physical harm. Whealon said a man from Canada who had business dealings with SIST had a list of individuals that SIST felt "were causing them problems in the community." According to Whealon, the man told authorities that "these SIST members wanted ‘these people taken care of.’"

Eisenberg would not say how Isaacson was making her way back to Shawano.

"I’m only authorized to say she is free," he said.

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