This ex-trophy building owner is New York’s biggest tax dodger

Japanese firm Hiro Real Estate owes $40M on 650 Madison Avenue, 150 East 42nd Street
August 18, 2014 11:00AM

A Japanese firm that unloaded its New York City trophy buildings following a bitter family dispute failed to pay $40 million in city and state taxes, making it Gotham’s biggest tax dodger.

Hiro Real Estate owes the taxes on two New York City real estate entities, the New York Post reported. Through those entities, Hiro previously controlled the Mobil Building at 150 East 42nd Street, which it sold to New York investor David Werner for $900 million earlier this year. In 2008, it offloaded 650 Madison Avenue in a $680 million sale to Ashkenazy Acquisitions and the Carlyle Group.

Hiro’s parent company closed for business in July 2013 following a lengthy power struggle between its owners, brothers Mitsuhiro and Hirokuni Honzawa, according to the newspaper.

“We continue to pursue all means available to us to collect the tax debt owed to New York state,” a spokesman for the New York state tax department told the Post. [NYP]Tom DiChristopher