Rockwell Gajwani, a former CEO of a real estate investment company was arrested July 12, in Connecticut on allegations of wire fraud, money laundering, and tax evasion. Rockwell Gajwani was presented the same day in Manhattan federal court before U.S. Magistrate Judge Frank Maas, according to U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara.
Gajwani, 52, of Darien, Connecticut, is charged with one count of wire fraud, and one count of money laundering, each of which carries a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison; and three counts of tax evasion, each of which carries a maximum sentence of five years in prison.
“As the chief executive officer of a Manhattan real estate company, Rockwell Gajwani was supposed to put the best interests of his company first. Instead, as alleged, he abused his position of authority to embezzle over a million dollars of company money,” Bharara is quoted saying in a press release. The U.S. Postal Inspection Service and the IRS were involved in the investigation.
From October 2011 through March 2013, Gajwani was the chief executive officer and president of a real estate investment company based in Manhattan where he is alleged to have taken more than $1 million in company funds, making wire transfers from the company’s bank account to his personal bank account, writing company checks to himself, and making cash withdrawals from the company’s bank account,. Investigators also allege Gajwani attempted to conceal his $700,000 salary through various means, including trying not to provide that information to the parent company.
By the time he left the company, Gajwani is alleged to have taken $1,300,000 more from the Manhattan Real Estate Company’s bank account than he was entitled to under his employment agreement. He is also alleged to have not paid taxes on his legitimate salary or the proceeds gotten by other means.