Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus R. Vance, Jr., today announced the sentencing of MARVIN RAFELD, 61, to 3-to-9 years in state prison for stealing more than $2 million from his customers and vendors through a scheme involving the defendant’s Wall Street jewelry business. On May 4, 2015, RAFELD pleaded guilty in New York State Supreme Court to six counts of Grand Larceny in the Second Degree and one count of Scheme to Defraud in the First Degree.
“In addition to defrauding his customers and vendors out of approximately $2 million, the defendant also admitted to stealing priceless pieces of jewelry, such as wedding bands, from victims who entrusted him with precious family heirlooms,” said District Attorney Vance. “For certain types of criminals, trust is capital—and in this case—the defendant leveraged the cachet of Wall Street and the customer confidence he cultivated over many years to steal from victims under the guise of legitimate business.”
According to his guilty plea and documents filed in court, RAFELD owned and operated a jewelry business in Lower Manhattan for more than 20 years, acquiring specific pieces of high-end jewelry for customers. However, beginning in 2013, RAFELD convinced customers to pay large sums of money for jewelry that the defendant never acquired. Additionally, the defendant stole jewelry provided to him by both vendors and customers. In some cases, RAFELD promised to pay his vendors for pieces post-receipt, and in other cases, he appropriated for himself certain sentimental pieces of jewelry that his customers entrusted to him for repair.
In total, RAFELD stole approximately $2.3 million from more than 100 unsuspecting customers and 16 different jewelry vendors.
Assistant District Attorney Seth Blumenthal handled the prosecution of the case, under the supervision of Assistant District Attorney Archana Rao, Principal Deputy Chief of the Financial Frauds Bureau, Assistant District Attorney Michael Sachs, Chief of the Financial Frauds Bureau, and Executive Assistant District Attorney David Szuchman, Chief of the Investigation Division. Trial Preparation Assistant Laura Gronauer also assisted with the case. Senior Rackets Investigator John Freck provided additional investigative assistance under the supervision of Supervising Rackets Investigator Jose Flores, both of the Investigation Bureau.
MARVIN RAFELD, D.O.B. 6/16/54
- Grand Larceny in the Second Degree, a class C felony, 6 counts
- Scheme to Defraud in the First Degree, a class E felony, 1 count
- 3-to-9 years in state prison
- $2.3 million restitution