Accused of fraud: Lin Halfon, 26, [photo], is accused of trying to defraud her 77-year-old husband of $1million after four months o marriage
A newly married 26-year-old woman is accused of trying to cash $1 million in checks from her 77-year-old husband’s account.
Lin Halfon and Richard Rappaport married about four months later. Last week, Halfon was arrested and charged with defrauding and exploiting her husband.
Lin Halfon, a native of Israel, was arrested at Tampa International Airport earlier this month on charges of money laundering, organized fraud and exploitation of an elderly person.
Investigators in Florida say Halfon tried to cash a $1 million cashier’s check at a Amscot branch last month. However, employees at the financial services company refused to cash the check. After the employees refused to cash the $1 million Wells Fargo cashier’s check on Nov. 7, Halfon offered to pay the company $100,000 to do the transaction, more than twice the company’s standard fee, the warrant affidavit states.
When that ploy also failed, she returned a few hours later with three checks, each for $333,333.
The financial services company employees again refused to cash the checks.
This time they made copies of the checks and Halfon’s Israeli passport, which she used as identification along with a U.S. visa. When asked about Rappaport’s whereabouts, Halfon said he was out of the country.
The employee contacted authorities.
Halfon told investigators On Nov. 12, she mailed the checks in a care package to her sister in Israel to hide them after she and Rappaport had a fight.
She claimed her new husband’s family had been pressuring him not to give her money and that she would ask her sister to mail back the checks.
The next day, investigators interviewed Rappaport and Titus at his home.
Initially the newly wed businessman said he believed it was a mistake until he asked Halfon to return the check.
Rappaport’s daughter Dayna Titus told the investigators Halfon “berated [her father], on the phone when he asked for the check back.”
Lin Halfon and Richard Rappaport pose for a photo at a benefit for the Florida Holocaust Museum held at the Vinoy Renaissance Hotel in Feb 2019
Husband Richard Rappaport who is president of a Tampa-based medical equipment company, initially wanted to give his wife the benefit of the doubt, investigators said.
The investigators told Rappaport that Halfon had broken the $1 million check into three checks. However, after two of the checks adding up to $666,666 were cashed a thousand miles away, he admitted that he believed he was a victim of fraud.
On November 22, a young man with an Orlando address reportedly, cashed one of the $333,333 checks in New Jersey. Five days later, the same man cashed a second check for the same amount at the same place.
Rapport’s adult daughter Dayna Titus did not even know her father was married to Halfon when the investigation into the checks started.
“Titus believed that Halfon was ‘conning’ Rappaport due to his age,” wrote Special Agent Victoria Morris of the Florida Department of Law Enforcement.
Halfon’s attorney Todd Foster, who specializes in defendants accused of white-collar crime said “There’s a valid marriage between this couple and we look forward to bringing forward additional facts to bring clarity to this situation”.
Her bail was set at $1 million.
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