Finally, a little relief for the long-suffering condo owners at troubled building 85 Adams Street in Dumbo. After years of litigation, two once-prolific luxury developers accused of fraud have reached an agreement with the state to repair and relinquish control of the building and two others in Manhattan.
Meanwhile, one of the developers, Shaya Boymelgreen, remains under investigation for fraud at the building and others elsewhere in Brooklyn and Manhattan.
Former partners Africa Israel and Boymelgreen were accused of ripping off buyers in the 79-unit building, fraudulently claiming the building met fireproofing and other codes, and stealing from building construction funds, among other misdeeds, according to Gothamist.
The settlement’s ruling mandates Africa Israel to hand over control of the condo board and implement basic fireproofing, fix leaks, and remedy possibly toxic mold at the three buildings, according to the New York Times.
While the settlement might appear to only scratch the surface of charges against Boymelgreen, the owners of 85 Adams Street are likely to receive an undisclosed payment from the developers, and New York Attorney General Eric T. Schneiderman is still pursuing a larger case against the former developer.
Schneiderman described the settlement as “a warning to property developers in New York State,” the New York Times reported.
The luxury building at 85 Adams Street was completed in 2007 to much fanfare, with all but seven of the units sold by the end of January 2008. But residents have contended for years the developer fraudulently certified that necessary fireproofing and other work had been done — when it hadn’t.
In 2012, the condo board sued the developers for racketeering, alleging more than 100 safety violations in the building, including missing sprinkler heads and faulty electrical outlets.
Before the 2008 crash and legal troubles brought an end to their business dealings, the two former partners were prolific developers in Brooklyn and Manhattan.
Boymelgreen had plans to transform Gowanus’ notorious abandoned Batcave into a mixed-use development called Gowanus Village.
Since Boymelgreen was temporarily barred from selling condos in New York City in February of 2014, his son Sam Boymelgreen has become active in Brooklyn development. He developed Windsor Terrace’s Kestrel and sold it for $76,000,000 in early 2015.
In March of last year, Boymelgreen listed his bizarre Crown Heights mansion, including three-story solarium and a bathroom with onyx tub, for $3,500,000.
So far, no takers.