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N.Y. art dealer accused of fraud

March 27, 2009|Bloomberg News

Manhattan art dealer Lawrence Salander, accused by clients of fraudulently disposing of artwork, was indicted on 100 counts, including larceny and fraud, in an alleged 13-year, $88-million scam.

Salander, 59, was arrested Thursday at his home in Millbrook, N.Y.

The indictment comes 17 months after Salander-O'Reilly Galleries filed for bankruptcy amid allegations that Salander swindled artists and clients, who included actor Robert De Niro. Prosecutors said he sold client artwork and pocketed the cash while luring investors with fake opportunities.

De Niro and former New York Observer Publisher Arthur Carter are among the hundreds of people who have filed claims against Salander and the gallery. Creditors allege that they're owed about $500 million and that Salander sold their art without their knowledge and didn't pay them. The dealer is also accused of defaulting on loans and other obligations.

Salander has previously denied any wrongdoing.

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