Photo: AP Images/Wikipedia
Over the summer we wrote about a high society scandal wracking the National Arts Club, a 113-year-old institution on Gramercy Park.The longtime president of the club, an eccentric millionaire named O. Aldon James, had nearly driven the club into the ground through supposed financial mismanagement, shady apartment rentals, and an overall inability to keep the place clean.
James was removed from his 25-year reign in March, but it was only last night that the club officially expelled him from its ranks, meaning he will have to give up his apartments in the storied building, DNAinfo reports. His twin brother and a friend were also expelled, according to DNAinfo.
James reportedly used the club to hoard massive amounts of junk, and he rented apartments to family members for a small fraction of their market rates. He’s also been blamed for a rash of dead exotic finches that started turning up around Gramercy Park in March, according to The New York Daily News.
James and the two other men who were expelled are currently under investigation by both the State Attorney General and New York District Attorney General’s offices, DNAinfo writes.
Want to see what a mess this place was? Check out these before-and-after photos of the massive cleanup effort that took place after James stepped down last spring.
Many of the “before” photos were taken by Miguel Serrano, a doorman at the NAC who was fired by James and re-hired by the board; and Luis Alfredo Garcia, a former employee who filed a New York State labour complaint against James after leaving in 2009, according to a source. Amy Zimmer, a news editor at DNAinfo, took the “after” pictures.
AFTER: Artwork is still being appraised. This painting has a gash; the frame is worth an estimated $5,000
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