A long-time Methuen official with Haverhill real estate ties has resigned two city posts following accusations he helped operate an illegal pyramid scheme.
James V. Piemonte left Methuen’s liquor licensing board and Board of Registrars of Voters Thursday, Methuen Mayor Stephen N. Zanni told WHAV News.
“The person worked very, very well in the position. I believe he was there for 10 years. He did a great job and that’s you know, whatever is best for the city.”
WHAV, the only Haverhill-based news source, was the first to draw the connection between Piemonte’s Haverhill ties and influential city role and a civil suit filed by Secretary of the Commonwealth William F. Galvin. Galvin filed suit last week against Piemonte, treasurer, and others associated with Andover-based EmGoldex Team USA Inc. Piemonte is also a manager of Scott Management and Maintenance Co., associated with the (Joseph) Scott Companies, 12 Rogers Road, Ward Hill. The mayor said he was not briefed on the gold-buying scheme.
“I don’t know what the circumstances were with that or what transpired. I know there were allegations made, but again its something until proven, but he did send in his resignation letter.
Mayor Zanni said while a search for a successor to Piemonte gets under way, the Methuen Licensing Board will still be able to function with a quorum.
“It’s a three-member board with an alternate. So there will be people available. There are actually two voting members of the three-member board. So they’re still functioning and that will go on. They meet once a month and they will have an opportunity to have a replacement in there in the next couple of weeks.”
Besides Piemonte, others involved in the scheme are Jonathan H. Seigler, president, formerly of Boston and now living in New Hampshire; and Methuen residents Matthew M. D’Agati, secretary and vice president; and Joseph Zingales, director. Galvin’s office said the group offered “securities in the form of memberships in a multi-level marketing program sponsored by EmGoldex.” It operated from offices at 16 Haverhill Street, Andover.
In his role at the Scott Companies, Piemonte played a role in having zoning restrictions loosened in 2010 at the Ward Hill Business Park.