NY caviar distributor gets leniency in fraud scam

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Associated Press

Posted on January 7, 2013 at 3:02 PM

Updated Monday, Jan 7 at 3:03 PM

NEW YORK (AP) — A New York luxury foods distributor who was charged with unlawfully importing caviar but evaded arrest for nearly a quarter-century until being captured last year won't have to spend any more time behind bars.

Isidoro "Mario" Garbarino was sentenced Monday in Manhattan to time served for unlawfully importing more than 100,000 pounds of Russian and Iranian caviar in the 1980s.

The 69-year-old Garbarino had been jailed since September. He was arrested by U.S. marshals after he was caught changing planes in Panama.

He admitted he used schemes to avoid high taxes while importing caviar worth more than $10 million.

He was charged in a 1987 indictment but posted his Greenwich, Conn., home as bail and fled in 1989. Prosecutors say he spent time in Como, Italy. He has paid $3 million in restitution.

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