New York AG: Sotheby's helped rich art lover skirt taxes
NEW YORK – Sotheby's helped an art collector dodge millions of dollars in New York sales taxes, the state attorney general said in a lawsuit filed Friday, accusing the prominent auction house of accepting bogus documentation to spare a top client a tax bill. “Sotheby’s violated the law and fleeced New York taxpayers out of millions just to boost its own sales," Attorney General Letitia James, a Democrat, said in a statement. Porsal agreed to pay $10.75 million in taxes, damages and penalties over allegations that it skirted sales tax on more than $50 million in art buys from various entities in New York. Other buyers generally owe New York state and city sales tax on art purchased and delivered in the city. Sales tax on the collector's 2010 Kapoor purchase alone would total over $126,000, according to the lawsuit.
California man sentenced in $6M modern art fraud scheme
LOS ANGELES A Southern California man who authorities say tried to sell $6 million worth of phony paintings he claimed were created by Andy Warhol, Jean-Michel Basquiat and other modern masters was sentenced Wednesday to five years in federal prison. Philip Righter, 43, of West Hollywood was sentenced in a federal court in Miami after pleading guilty to wire fraud, aggravated identity theft and tax fraud, the U.S. attorney's office said. Righter was given 60 months in prison in a case that was filed in Los Angeles. The judge also handed down a five-year sentence in a Florida case in which Righter acknowledged trying to sell forgeries to the owner of a Miami art gallery. Richter sold the bogus artworks from 2016 through June of 2018, creating phony documents to back up his claims that they were genuine, prosecutors said.
Attention Shoppers! There's a Ghost in the Well of This Manhattan Clothing Store
At 129 Spring Street, paranormal enthusiasts can find a beautiful brick well in the basement of the clothing store COS. Rumors had always circulated that the The Spring Street Ghost roamed the restaurant, but it wasnt until 1980s that the owners decided to investigate. Throughout the restaurants time on Spring Street, employees claimed that they had seen items spontaneously fly off tables and crash into walls. Matt Anderson, who was the head of mens design for COS, joked in 2014 with the New York Post about The Spring Street Ghost, saying, So we have a ghost, our own COS ghost. In 2017, New York City Department of Records and Information Services conceded that 129 Spring Street was, in fact, haunted.