FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Tuesday, February 18, 2020
Sunset Park Attorney Indicted for Allegedly Stealing Approximately $280,000 From Two Families He Represented in Sale of Their Homes
Defendant Allegedly Received Down Payments to Hold in Escrow,
Issued Checks Returned for Insufficient Funds
Brooklyn District Attorney Eric Gonzalez today announced that a 70-year-old Sunset Park attorney has been arraigned on an indictment in which he is charged with several counts of grand larceny for allegedly stealing approximately $280,000 in down payments he received to hold in escrow from two clients he represented in the sale of their homes.
District Attorney Gonzalez said, “This defendant allegedly betrayed the trust of his clients and abused his power as an attorney, taking advantage of the escrow accounts he controlled to steal hundreds of thousands of dollars. We will now seek to hold him accountable for this serious breach of trust.”
The District Attorney identified the defendant as Edmundo Roman-Perez, 70, of Sunset Park, Brooklyn. He was arraigned today before Brooklyn Supreme Court Justice Danny Chun on an indictment in which he is charged with second-degree grand larceny, three counts of third-degree grand larceny and five counts of issuing a bad check. He was released without bail and ordered to return to court on April 1, 2020.
The District Attorney said that, according to the investigation, between October 2018 and March 2019, the defendant represented a couple in the sale of their $1,350,000 two-family home in Sunset Park. It is alleged that the defendant received a $135,000 down payment from the buyers that he was to hold in escrow until closing.
In March 2019, shortly after the closing, the defendant issued two checks to cover the amount of the down payment, each in the amount of $65,600, both checks were allegedly returned because of insufficient funds.
Similarly, between November 2018 and April 2019, the defendant represented three brothers in the sale of their $1,500,000 two-family home in Dyker Heights. It is alleged that the defendant received a $150,000 down payment from the buyers that he was to hold in escrow until closing.
In April 2019, three days after closing, the defendant allegedly issued three checks to the victims, each in the amount of $49,187.10, to cover the amount of the down payment. It is alleged that all three checks were returned because of insufficient funds.
The case was investigated by Supervising Financial Investigator Deborah Wey of the District Attorney’s Investigations Division.
The case is being prosecuted by Senior Assistant District Attorney Katherine Zdrojeski of the District Attorney’s Public Integrity Unit, under the supervision of Assistant District Attorney Laura Neubauer, Chief of the Public Integrity Unit, and Assistant District Attorney Michel Spanakos, Deputy Chief of the Investigations Division, and the overall supervision of Assistant District Attorney Patricia McNeill, Chief of the Investigations Division.
An indictment is an accusatory instrument and not proof of a defendant’s guilt