A Palm Beach couple is facing criminal charges for attempting to hide pricey assets, such as jewelry and silverware from bankruptcy court. The couple filed Chapter 7 in 2008 hoping to discharge $2.9 million in debt. Dr. Richard Krugman heads a medical practice in New Jersey that lost a $4.3 million judgment to an insurance company. The couple claimed available assets of less than $13,000, but a court review found significantly more than that.
According to the federal criminal complaint, the couple fraudulently failed to disclose that they owned the following pricey items:
• A woman’s gold wedding band with two carats of diamonds.
• A woman’s platinum hoop earrings with pave diamonds.
• A woman’s gold cocktail ring with blue stone.
• A woman’s silver bangle bracelet.
• A man’s Swiss army diving watch.
• A Royal Doulton China set.
• A high-end silverware set.
• A Waterford Crystal glass set.
• A Lalique leaf bowl.
• A Lalique caviar bowl.
• Two George Rodrigue “Blue Dog” lithographs, signed and numbered.
As a result, the bankruptcy court refused to grant them a discharge. Now the couple could face up to five years in prison and a fine of up to $250,000 for excluding these assets. The defendants intend to plead guilty.
This should come as a warning to anyone who plans to hide assets from the bankruptcy court and their attorney. Bankruptcy trustees are experts at finding undisclosed property, vehicles, boats, jewelry, antiques, and collectibles. If you are caught trying to hide assets, the consequences are big. Your discharge will be denied, and you will be unable to discharge the debts you listed in a subsequent bankruptcy filing. In addition, the potential penalty for bankruptcy crimes include fines and imprisonment of up to five years.
If you have any questions on this topic or are in financial crisis and considering filing for bankruptcy, contact an experienced Miami bankruptcy attorney who can advise you of all of your options. As an experienced CPA as well as a proven bankruptcy lawyer, Timothy Kingcade knows how to help clients take full advantage of the bankruptcy laws to protect their assets and get successful results. Since 1996 Kingcade & Garcia, P.A. has been helping people from all walks of life build a better tomorrow. Our attorneys’ help thousands of people every year take advantage of their rights under bankruptcy protection to restart, rebuild and recover. The day you hire our firm, we will contact your creditors to stop the harassment. You can also find useful consumer information on the Kingcade & Garcia website at www.miamibankruptcy.com.