The Real Deal New York

Judge postpones Steve Croman sentencing

Landlord handed over a check for $3M, part of his fine
By Rich Bockmann | September 19, 2017 11:30AM

Steven Croman

Steven Croman will get to spend the Jewish holidays at home instead of behind bars.

At a sentencing hearing Tuesday morning in Lower Manhattan for the convicted landlord, Manhattan State Supreme Court Justice Jill Konviser postponed sentencing for Oct. 3.

Prosecutors in the office of state Attorney General Eric Schneiderman – who dubbed Croman the “Bernie Madoff of landlords” – opposed the motion, but Konviser granted it nonetheless.

Croman did hand over a check made out to the state’s Department of Taxation and Finance in the amount of $3 million, the first installment of a $5 million settlement he agreed to pay when he pleaded guilty in June to felony charges of grand larceny, tax fraud and filing a false instrument.

He ditched the dark suit he had previously worn to hearings at the criminal court building at 100 Centre Street, opting for a light blue dress shirt tucked into his dark jeans and sporting white sneakers.

He remained mostly quiet, except for when he told the judge he understood that he if he did not show up for the hearing next month, she would sentence him to the maximum of up to 11 years.

Per the terms of his plea deal, Croman is set to spend one year in jail at Rikers Island.

Members of the Stop Croman Coalition tenant group sat quietly in the courtroom to watch the proceedings, which lasted about 10 minutes.

Outside in the court halls, however, they expressed outrage that the landlord, who still faces civil charges stemming from tenant-harassment claims, was granted a reprieve for the holidays.

They said poor living conditions and harassment still exist at the buildings, and the criminal conviction hasn’t done anything to address the issues.

“I don’t think it’s going to do any good,” said Cynthia Chaffee, a tenant at one of Croman’s buildings on East 18th Street.

Oral arguments in Schneiderman’s civil case against Croman are scheduled for Nov. 13.