Police cuffed a Long Island man accused of selling an 80-year-old Bedford-Stuyvesant woman’s $1 million brownstone home — without her knowledge.
The defendant, a 51-year-old Mount Sinai resident, was arraigned Tuesday on charges including second-degree grand larceny and second-degree money laundering in Kings County Supreme Court, and faces up to 15 years in prison, according to District Attorney Eric Gonzalez.
The Long Islander, who acted in cahoots with another suspect, who remains on the lam, allegedly stole the deed for the victim’s Clifton Place brownstone located between Bedford and Nostrand avenues where she and her family had lived for 30 years, until a fire forced them to vacate the property in 2010, Gonzalez said.
The defendant and his accomplice sold the older woman’s home to a developer for $850,000 in 2015, forging the victim’s signature on the stolen deed, before wiring $190,000 to an account in Athens, Greece, withdrawing $120,000 in cash, and transferring a whopping $250,000 to an account owned by his wife, according to the district attorney.
The victim would later discover her whole house had been stolen after a neighbor informed her that a worker there had introduced himself as the new owner, according to Gonzalez.
“This defendant allegedly thought he could take advantage of an elderly homeowner’s absence to steal her house and sell it before she or anyone else noticed,” said the prosecutor. “Brooklyn’s robust real estate market continues to be an attractive target for theft and fraud.”
The defendant was ordered held on $150,000 bond, or $75,000 cash bail, and is due back in court on Aug. 14.