NEW YORK (CBSNewYork/AP) – A New York City building superintendent who exploited residents’ trust to steal thousands of dollars’ worth of art and jewelry will spend three to nine years in prison.
WCBS 880’s Irene Cornell On The Case
Mihaly “Mike” Kovacsezics didn’t speak at his sentencing Tuesday, WCBS 880’s Irene Cornell reported.
Kovacsezics sat impassively as victim Roxane West pleaded with him to reveal what happened to hundreds of paintings by her aunt, Shirley Almeda West — an Abstract Expressionist originally from Texas.
West said it was like ripping her heart out when she discovered that the man she considered a “super” super and a friend had stolen her late aunt’s entire life’s work.
“I worked while she was alive to help promote her work and then I made her the promise that I would continue and preserve and protect her life work and continue to promote it, and now her paintings are gone,” West said.
Kovacsezics pleaded guilty in February to taking the artwork after West’s 2010 death. He also admitted stealing more than $23,000 in jewelry from another building resident and about $60,000 in gems from a friend, Cornell reported.
Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance Jr. called Kovacsezics a “con man.”
Looking at the Hungarian defendant’s long history of thievery, Judge Charles Solomon said if anyone deserves to be deported he does, Cornell reported.
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