Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance, Jr. announced the arrest and indictment of Stephanie Brown, a rare coin expert (numismatist) broker and dealer, on 83 charges including Burglary in the Second Degree, Grand Larceny in the Second Degree, Scheme to Defraud in the First Degree and Forgery in the Second Degree. It is alleged that after Ms. Brown duped a mother-daughter pair into investing $1 million dollars into gold and silver coins during a three year period. Ms. Brown, an Arizona native, allegedly came to New York and stole $430,000 worth of those coins back from the pair after they allowed Ms. Brown to come to their apartment.
According to the Manhattan District Attorney’s Office, since 2007, Ms. Brown, at one time an an independent broker for ITM Trading, Inc “made numerous misrepresentations and omissions in order to induce the mother and daughter to purchase coins. For example, [Ms. Brown] advised both mother and daughter to liquidate all financial investments they held and to invest their life’s savings in gold coins.”
Sadly, it is alleged that not only did the victims fail to recognize the importance of diversifying their investments, they permitted Ms. Brown to come into their apartment where she organized the coins in a manner to maximize their value. It is further alleged that Ms. Brown convinced the pair that their coins where safer in their home than locked down in a bank’s safety deposit box.
According to prosecutors, Ms. Brown at times was left in the home alone. During these times she stole coins valued at approximately $430,000. Before returning to New York Ms. Brown sold some of the coins to a local dealer where she is alleged to have forged documentation by indicating she was the rightful owner.
The most serious offense facing Ms. Brown is the charge of Burglary in the Second Degree. A “C” violent crime, she faces a mandatory minimum of 3.5 years in state prison if convicted. Interestingly enough, this may be the most difficult charge for prosecutors to prove. The New York Penal Law requires that for a conviction to stand, one element that prosecutors must prove is that either Ms. Brown unlawfully entered or unlawfully remained in the apartment. If Ms. Brown was invited in and that right was never revoked, can prosecutors satisfy this element? If convicted, Ms. Brown faces up to 15 years in prison.
As to the other charges, Grand Larceny in the Second Degree is a “C” felony, Forgery in the Second Degree is a “D” felony and Scheme to Defraud is an “E” felony. While there is no mandatory minimum term of prison if convicted, the crimes carry a maximum sentence of 15, 7 and 4 years respectively. Obviously, it is the crime of Burglary in the Second Degree that Ms. Brown must first try to identify and implement a defense to.
For extensive information on the crime and laws of Burglary in New York as well as the crimes and laws of Grand Larceny and Forgery, please follow the highlighted links to the “information pages.” Additional information on these and other crimes as well as legal decisions and cases in the news can be found on Saland Law PC’s New York Criminal Lawyer Blog at NewYorkCriminalLawyerBlog.Com
Saland Law PC is a New York Criminal defense firm located in Manhattan. Representing the accused throughout the region, the New York criminal lawyers at Saland Law PC served as Manhattan prosecutors prior to starting the firm.