Carlo DeMaria, Jr. vs. Everett Leader Herald, Sergio Cornelio, Joshua Resnek, Matthew Philbin and Andrew Philbin, Sr.
You don’t say
Everett Leader Herald former photographer and newspaper layout designer James “Jim” Mahoney met with attorneys for Mayor Carlo DeMaria on Dec. 16, 2022, at the Boston law offices of Saul Ewing Arnstein & Lehr LLP to provide testimony in the ongoing lawsuit. Mahoney, who worked for the newspaper under the direction of corrupt editor Joshua Resnek and owner Matthew Philbin, stated under oath that Philbin was truly in charge of the newspaper’s content from cover to cover during the years he worked from February 2020 to July 2022.
Mahoney stated to Attorney Jeffrey Robbins that from the start, as the newspaper’s makeup man, he was in direct contact with Philbin via email several times a week, providing drafts of the newspaper edition and awaiting comments from Philbin prior to sending the final weekly draft to press. His testimony contradicts Philbin’s answer to the lawsuit where he claimed he was not involved in the review, editing and approval of the Leader Herald’s articles.
“Every week you provided copies of the Everett Leader Herald to Mr. Philbin for his review prior to publication, correct?” asked Atty. Robbins.
“That is correct,” replied Mahoney.
And every week you would wait for Mr. Philbin’s comments or approval of the newspaper before it was published, correct?”
“That is correct.”
“And you sent the Leader Herald in draft form to Mr. Philbin so that he could review the paper and edit or approve it, correct?” continued Robbins.
“That is correct,” replied Mahoney.
“And that was per the instruction of Mr. Resnek and Mr. Philbin, correct?”
“That is correct.”
A liar’s liar
Mahoney’s testimony greatly contradicts Resnek’s testimony that he gave under oath to Atty. Robbins during his fourth deposition on Sept. 1, 2022. “Mr. Resnek, as a general matter, every week for the last several years you have sent the drafts of the articles you plan to put into the Leader Herald for Mr. Philbin’s review and approval, correct?” asked Robbins.
“No,” replied Resnek.
Resnek was then asked to confirm if he received revisions and edits back from Philbin and his employees. Resnek stated, “Mainly his employees.”
At one point, Resnek would attempt to lay blame on Philbin’s former vice president of operations, Elena Vega, claiming if he sent 12 stories to her for misspellings and editing, and then gave them to Philbin, “that’s her business.”
Resnek noted that Vega had no newspaper or editorial experience – but routinely received, as Philbin’s “chief bottle washer” according to Resnek, drafts of articles.
Robbins would also show Resnek exhibits of emails he sent of editorials as far back as 2019 to another newspaper makeup person named Alex Yates – as well as Matthew Philbin.
Following the Philbin
Mahoney said that it was the regular practice that he observed while working for the newspaper between April 2020 and November 2021.
Mahoney, who worked for many years for the Boston Herald, was represented at the deposition by attorneys provided by Philbin.
Mahoney stated that during one of the few meetings he attended with Resnek at Philbin’s office on Railroad Avenue in Revere, he noted that the understanding of the newspaper’s content was to stay focused on town politics. When asked if the priority was to focus primarily on the mayor in a negative way, Mahoney said that – over the course of time working at the newspaper – it was clearly written in a critical manner. “And you discussed with Mr. Resnek or Mr. Resnek discussed with you the fact that the articles were focusing on Mr. DeMaria, correct?” asked Robbins.
“Certainly,” replied Mahoney.
“And Mr. Resnek, in various ways, indicated to you that the focus of the paper was being critical of Mr. DeMaria, correct?”
“I think that’s pretty apparent, yes,” said Mahoney.
When asked about the working dynamic between Resnek and Philbin, Mahoney stated that Resnek reported to Philbin on a regular basis throughout the process as he was part of the email traffic between Resnek and Philbin. “And you observed that Mr. Resnek waited for Mr. Philbin to edit or approve the articles before the newspaper went to bed, so to speak, correct?” asked the attorney.
“That’s also correct,” replied Mahoney.
Mahoney stated that, typically, Resnek would be sending drafts of the articles to Philbin via emails, which Mahoney was included in, on Monday and Tuesdays, followed by revised versions of the articles. By the end of the day Tuesday, Mahoney would send a mock-up of the edition to Resnek and Philbin for editing and final approval before going to press.
“As Tuesday progressed and you got to the point where you were prepared to send the final proof of the newspaper to Philbin and Resnek, you would do that, correct?” asked the attorney.
“Correct,” he replied.
Mahoney said that once the paper was “edited to their standards” (Resnek’s and Philbin’s), only then would the final draft be released. “And then you would hear from Mr. Resnek or from Mr. Philbin that Mr. Philbin had approved it and it was ready to go?” asked Robbins.
“Always from Mr. Resnek,” said Mahoney.
“But he would tell you that Mr. Philbin had approved it, correct?”
“That is also correct,” said Mahoney.
Philbin’s final approval
According to Mahoney, once Philbin approved the final draft, it was sent to the printers.
“Did Mr. Resnek ever suggest to you that Mr. Philbin’s approval of the newspaper was not necessary?” asked Atty. Robbins.
“Never to my recollection. I have fairly distinct memories of that time frame of Mr. Resnek always saying, hang on, you know, Mr. Philbin needs to see it,” said Mahoney.
Mahoney was shown the Mayor’s Complaint exhibits where Philbin denied any involvement “in the reviewing, editing or approving the alleged defamatory statements” in the newspaper’s publication.
“It appears not to be a true statement,” stated Mahoney.
On numerous occasions during his testimony, Mahoney stated that Philbin was always involved in the newspaper’s production – from the editing and proofing of the articles to the final drafts of the complete edition – before it went to press.