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And people wonder why we don't like lawyers...

28 years ago, the biggest private art heist in Massachusetts history took place. Seven paintings, including a Cezanne, were stolen from a private collection in Stockbridge -- and were not heard from again for almost three decades.

But the truth has finally come out: the thief entrusted the stolen paintings to his lawyer -- who held on to them ever since.

Now-retired criminal attorney (in several senses of the word) says that his client left the paintings with him, then got himself killed by guys he owed money to about a year later. The lawyer said he intended to return the paintings for the reward, but changed his mind when he found out the owner hadn't had them insured.

So he kept them. He tried to sell them a couple of times, but they kept getting discovered as stolen and the auctions fell through.

Attorney Mardirosian says that he did nothing wrong. He says he passed on selling them several times, and his whole intention was to collect a 10% reward from the owner.

Mr. Mardirosian retired from practicing law back in 1995, but he might want do dust off his old law books and look up a few terms. "Possession of stolen property," "accessory after the fact," and "attempting to sell stolen property" might be good starting points.


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Comments (10)

Oh, his intention the whole... (Below threshold)
Robin Goodfellow:

Oh, his intention the whole time was to collect a 10% reward. Well, that's nice. It's good that he only wanted to steal 10% of the value of the paintings rather than the entire value. I guess instead of massive, multi-million dollar grand theft he really only meant to steal a few hundred thou. Geez Jay, can't you cut a guy some slack?

How does the statute of lim... (Below threshold)
Kurt:

How does the statute of limitations work in a case like this?

How does the statu... (Below threshold)
kbiel:
How does the statute of limitations work in a case like this?

INAL, but my layman's understanding is that the possession of stolen property is an ongoing crime. So, the statute of limitations clock, if any, would begin when he is no longer in possession of the stolen items. That is assuming that possession of stolen property is the correct crime to charge this crooked lawyer (redundency alert) with.

Jeez, what an arrogant pric... (Below threshold)
David:

Jeez, what an arrogant prick!

He's scum.Hey, why... (Below threshold)
Denny Crane:

He's scum.

Hey, why don't you ever post about "and people wonder why we don't like former postal employees?"

Scum exists in all walks of life, including bloggers.

For clarification, I'm not ... (Below threshold)
Denny Crane:

For clarification, I'm not calling JT scum. I was thinking of the KOS kids, Oliver Willis, etc.

Oh wow, read the article. ... (Below threshold)
Synova:

Oh wow, read the article. It's amazing. The guy's *cover* is that he had no intention to steal them, or sell them, but only to recieve a 10% commission, as though a "reward" was his legal and moral right to recieve rather than an optional gift of gratitude and without it he had no responsibility to return the stolen property to the owner.

And get this... in his attempts to "get his" he returned the most valuable painting, the Cezanne *in exchange for* a document signing over ownership of the other paintings. Since the owner has continued to try to get the paintings back and prevent their sale, the *theif* is threatening to sue him for breach of contract... the papers he signed in exchange for the return of the Cezanne.

And yes, lawyers do get a bum rap, they do. But fellows like this, with no moral compass or even apparent clue about what *other people* think is right and wrong is one of the reasons why.

Any relation to Agamemnon '... (Below threshold)
not Tony:

Any relation to Agamemnon 'The Mole' Busmalis?

Sociopaths do well in caree... (Below threshold)
Omni:

Sociopaths do well in careers like law, but they're not people you'd want to have possession of any of your property.

(has known many sociopaths)

You see that's the problem.... (Below threshold)

You see that's the problem. 99% of lawyers give the other 1% a bad name.

Horse whipping is what he should get, not a finders fee.




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