A man who posed as the owner of an apartment at the Moinian Group’s Atelier condominium building to steal money from would-be renters was sentenced to three to six years in state prison, the Manhattan District Attorney’s office announced Wednesday.
Jon Girodes, a former Republican candidate for the state Senate, advertised a luxury rental apartment at 635 West 42nd Street on Craigslist. Posing as apartment owner, he met with 13 renters between August and September 2016. During that time he collected a total of $63,450 by telling people they were able to move into the apartment, according to a statement from Manhattan D.A. Cyrus Vance Jr.
The victims paid advance rent and deposits, but at the last minute, Girodes would tell them they couldn’t move in, blaming building management as a ruse, the D.A.’s office said.
Prosecutors said he did not own the home and had no right to sublease it. On some occasions he impersonated the owner, according to the release, and provided false identification on documents.
In July, Girodes pleaded guilty to two counts of grand larceny in the third degree and one count of identity theft in the first degree and scheme to defraud in the first degree. A judge ordered the 39-year-old liable to pay $54,700 in stolen funds to his victims as part of the sentence.
Last year, owners of apartments at the Atelier filed a $100 million lawsuit against Moinian Group, alleging the company was illegally preventing them from accessing the building’s amenities. The condominium building was built in 2007 and has a total of 478 condo units.