US seizes 2,200 pieces of artwork in NJ
According to the complaint, an unnamed assistant for Rivkin told authorities that Rivkin controlled all financial accounts. "Money would come in and he (Rivkin) would move it out," the assistant told authorities.
Authorities allege Rivkin used Green Diesel's bank account and other accounts to buy at least $18 million in artwork. Rivkin tended to buy his photographs in groups, making it difficult to trace individual purchases, but authorities said they have matched 1,590 pieces of art to one credit card and four bank accounts.
In April 2012, the federal Environmental Protection Agency issued a notice of violation to Green Diesel, alleging it improperly generated credits that track and boost renewable fuel production. Authorities claim Rivkin arranged to have the art shipped out the year before, after learning of the investigation.
An EPA spokesman did not return a call for comment.
According to the complaint, Rivkin's assistant said Rivkin started purchasing vintage photographs after receiving the "EPA money." Much of the artwork was shipped from Houston to Newark and eventually bound for Spain, authorities said.
The assistant traveled to Geneva and Barcelona with Rivkin, the assistant told authorities. Rivkin stayed in Spain and when the assistant returned to the U.S. noticed that Rivkin's office was cleaned out and numerous documents were shredded, authorities said.
Associated Press writer Geoff Mulvihill in Trenton contributed to this story.
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