Brooklyn landlord with $87M portfolio charged with running prostitution ring out of his buildings

Isaac Schwartz, who owns 48 properties through shell corporations, was arrested last month for enterprise corruption and conspiracy.

New York /
Nov.November 14, 2018 09:15 AM

2007 Foster Avenue in Brooklyn (Credit: Google Maps and Wikipedia)

UPDATED, Wednesday, Nov. 14 at 11:16 p.m.: One Ditmas Park resident thought he had it bad enough after enduring bed bugs, bulging walls and a hole in the ceiling. But then he learned his building was being used to service an illegal brothel.

Another Park Slope resident also learned there were apartments being used for prostitution in her building.

Both residents had the same landlord, Isaac Schwartz, a regular on the New York City public advocate’s “worst landlord” list who was arrested last month after police discovered a prostitution ring operating in his buildings, according to The New York Times.

Schwartz’s arrest highlighted the role complicit landlords play in enabling illegal prostitution rings to operate in residential buildings. Police alleged that four of Schwartz’s Brooklyn properties, 2007 Foster Avenue, 483 4th Avenue, 880 Gates Avenue and 203 Onderdonk Avenue, had housed brothels, as part of a prostitution ring run by a former police detective. The landlord pleaded not guilty and was released without bail on his own recognizance. According to the Times, Schwartz’s portfolio numbers 48 buildings valued at about $87 million.

Citing housing court documents, The Times reported that Schwartz, who works as an EMT in Borough Park, runs his rental company with Mendy Lowy and a contracting firm, Powerful Electric, with his brother-in-law Shalon Seelfreund. Schwartz and Lowy were also connected to a strange kidnapping ring in Lakewood, New Jersey. Schwartz and Lowy paid $2 million in bond to secure the release of a rabbi and another man charged with abduction and assault related to divorces in the Orthodox community, the Times reported.  [NYT] — David Jeans

Correction: An earlier version noted Schwartz was the developer behind a project in Bedford-Stuyvesant, Brooklyn; it’s a different developer with the same name. 


Related Articles

arrow_forward_ios
A photo illustration of 6 South Oxford Street in Fort Greene (Compass)
Townhouse set to smash Fort Greene price record
Townhouse set to smash Fort Greene price record
The Real Deal's Hiten Samtani and Douglas Elliman's Scott Durkin (Photos by Paul Dilakian)
Real estate’s titans talk building, selling, and reinventing the city
Real estate’s titans talk building, selling, and reinventing the city
Ryan Serhant and Bess Freedman (iStock, Illustration by Kevin Cifuentes for The Real Deal)
Ryan Serhant fires back at Bess Freedman, calls legacy brokerages “scared”
Ryan Serhant fires back at Bess Freedman, calls legacy brokerages “scared”
25 North Moore Street (Compass, iStock, Illustration by Kevin Cifuentes for The Real Deal)
Manhattan luxury market slumps back toward normal
Manhattan luxury market slumps back toward normal
281 President Street and 1 John Street, Brooklyn (Streeteasy, Compass, iStock, Illustration by Kevin Cifuentes for The Real Deal)
Jumbo Dumbo condo claims top Brooklyn contract
Jumbo Dumbo condo claims top Brooklyn contract
Johnson & Johnson's James Burke with 35 Potato Road/543 Daniel’s Lane (Johnson & Johnson, Realtor)
Sagaponack waterfront estate sells for almost $48M
Sagaponack waterfront estate sells for almost $48M
Nest Seekers’ Bianca D’Alessio and Mia Calabrese (Nest Seekers, StreetEasy)
Brooklyn Heights penthouse breaks rental record
Brooklyn Heights penthouse breaks rental record
Competition for Rentals Heats Up in Manhattan, Brooklyn, Queens
Is Airbnb playing a role in NYC’s skyrocketing rents?
Is Airbnb playing a role in NYC’s skyrocketing rents?
arrow_forward_ios

The Deal's newsletters give you the latest scoops, fresh headlines, marketing data, and things to know within the industry.

Loading...