Thursday, March 10, 2016

Lawsuit: 'Knight In Shining Armor' Dazzles Divorcee, Then Uses Forged Deed To Sell Her 18-Acre Long Island Business Property Out From Under Her, Walking Away w/ Million$

In Suffolk County, Long Island, the New York Post reports:
  • Long Island catering queen Rhona Silver thought she’d met the man of her dreams when a rabbi introduced her to a real estate developer in 2003.

    That is, she says, until the businessman took her money and ran.

    Now Silver — who ran the sprawling Huntington Town House catering hall on Long Island — is suing Barry Newman for $25.9 million, alleging he forged her name on documents for the sale of the hall’s 18-acre property and ripped her off for millions.

    On their first date, Newman flew Silver, a divorcée in her late 50s, to Boston on a private jet for a seafood dinner. On their second date, they went to Rome for Italian food.

    “He took me to Valentino shopping, to the Spanish Steps [in Rome], bought my daughter a fur pocketbook,” Silver told The Post.

    She fell hard — and quickly entrusted Newman with her finances, even letting him oversee the sale of her legendary catering hall, which had 12 ballrooms and hosted luminaries from Hillary Clinton to rapper 50 Cent.

    “He was going to be my Maurice Tempelsman,” a weepy Silver said, referring to the late Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis’ companion, who managed her money after her second husband, Aristotle Onassis, died.

    “He said, ‘I’m going to take care of you and your family forever,’ ” the single mom recalled. “I had no reason not to believe him.”

    But when Newman secured a $38.5 million deal with Lowe’s for the 20-acre Jericho Turnpike property in June 2007, he forged her signature on the sale documents and hit the road, taking Silver’s millions with him, her pending Suffolk County lawsuit alleges.

    No one told me when the closing was, no one told me about it,” Silver said about the Lowe’s sale, which took place in the offices of Newman’s lawyer in Binghamton, NY.

    Her attorney, Jeffrey Buss, showed The Post documents with what he claims are Silver’s forged signature.

    In an affidavit, a forensic document examiner says that two sets of closing documents, one from March 2007 and another from June 2007, have three signature lines bearing Silver’s name and the script is identical on each.

    It is axiomatic that no person signs his name exactly the same way twice,” the examiner, Andrew Sulner, says in court papers. “It is irrefutable that at least one of these two signature blocks is a forgery accomplished by means of a mechanical or digital ‘cut and paste’ process.”

    Silver was supposed to net $6 million on the sale but she got nothing and is now dependent on friends to make ends meet, according to her suit.

    Newman’s attorney, Douglas Cooper, said there “is not a single shred of truth” in Silver’s claims.

    In court papers, Newman admits he swept into Silver’s life to help a damsel in distress. But, he says, “Silver’s claims that she has been victimized are a blatant fraud,” maintaining she used the loans to fund her “lavish lifestyle.”

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