The (purebred show-dog) ate their homework

Luxury condo owners explain why they owe hundreds of thousands in back taxes
February 27, 2017 10:00AM

From left: Trump International Hotel & Tower, 15 Central Park West and The Plaza

Luxury condominium owners have some real rich excuses why they haven’t paid their property taxes.

The owner of a European yacht company who bought a 27th-floor condo at Trump International Hotel & Tower for $2.8 million in 2002 has been delinquent since 2013, the New York Post reported.

He owes $185,000 in back taxes, with interest piling up. His excuse?

The mogul said he was aware he owed the taxman, but explained he was “embroiled” in a divorce.

There are 22,629 property owners throughout the five boroughs who are behind on nearly $800 million in taxes, according to the Department of Finance. That’s down from the $890 million that 24,202 property owners owed a year ago.

But while the average New Yorker may fall behind for lack of cash, some millionaires and billionaires have colorful excuses for not ponying up, city records show.

At the tony 15 Central Park West, the owner of a four-bedroom condo purchased for $3.4 million in cash back in 2008 said that bad investment advice was to blame for falling behind on $165,000 in taxes.

The owner said she was in the process of getting a mortgage and plans to pay off the back taxes. She also owes more than $40,000 in maintenance fees, which led the condo board to amend its rules so that those fall behind on common charges will be barred from using the building’s amenities, or getting food delivered.

And at The Plaza, the city is having a hard time tracking down the owner of a $12.35 million condo who owes $236,357 in back taxes. The owner, a European watch company, continued to send the tax bills to the listed address of Barclay’s private wealth office on the tax haven Isle of Jersey.

The Finance department changed the address to The Plaza in January. A spokesperson for the watch company did not immediately return calls for comment. [NYP]Rich Bockmann