Robert Cassandro showed no discrimination when he defrauded his own relatives in a real estate Ponzi scheme, according to prosecutors. Cassandro, a Long Island attorney, is accused of scamming $4.6 million from several investors including his own family. He raised the money with an elaborately crafted real estate Ponzi scheme but used the money to pay off his own personal bills including that of his country club, according to the charges.
Cassandro is a married man and a father of three children. His family members who were allegedly bilked include Jamie Sadock and Jerry Perelmutter. These two individuals were duped out of the major portion of the cash in this scheme, states the complaint filed against Cassandro.
Cassandro allegedly convinced his victims to part with their money by assuring them he was investing their money in single family construction projects on Long Island. This was before the housing bubble went bust. His money-making alleged racket stopped generating money in 2007 but till his arrest, Cassandro continued to give his sales pitch to prospective victims. He also told the victims that their loans would be secured. Cassandro then fronted the properties to get private loan funds from various places and this was not known to the victims, according to the complaint. He managed to collect more money than needed for such projects.
Cassandro is a real estate lawyer in Woodbury and is a partner at Abelow and Cassandro. According to the Assistant District Attorney Sarah Sacks he stole money from his family. After the charges of scheme to defraud in the first degree and grand larceny in the first degree were read out, Cassandro entered a plea of ‘not guilty’. According to Cassandro’s lawyers, it was only a series of real estate investments that had gone bad and not a willful plan to scam people.
The maximum term of prison associated with grand larceny is 25 years. Cassandro was released on a bond of $50,000. Cassandro has also not returned any of the money that he has got by, according to prosecutors, betraying the trust of people close to him and who have known him for many years. Earlier, a few years ago and in 2004 Cassandro had agreed to pay the SEC $25,000 as civil penalty for his role in helping Spectrum Brands draft fraudulent securities documents.