Photo: Wikimedia Commons
Rudy Kurniawan, the wunderkind wine dealer whose client list included billionaire William I. Koch, was arrested by the FBI on Thursday for allegedly selling counterfeit wine, William K. Rashbaum and Matt Flegenheimer report for The New York Times.That’s not just a few grapes’ worth. Kurniawan is accused of selling $1.3 million worth of counterfeit wine, the New York Times reported.
Kurniawan, an Indonesian citizen, was highly regarded in the wine world, the writers note, for his ability to procure rare bottles.
According to the New York Times:
The criminal complaint in the case said that in 2008, Mr. Kurniawan consigned for auction at least 84 bottles of counterfeit wine purporting to be from Domaine Ponsot in Burgundy, France, which were expected to sell for approximately $600,000. Although he represented the wine as authentic, it was not, prosecutors said.
He was also charged with trying to sell a single bottle that he claimed was a 1929 Domaine Ponsot. That was not possible, according to the complaint, because Domaine Ponsot did not begin estate bottling until 1934.
Kurniawan is now being been charged with three counts of wire fraud and three counts of mail fraud.
It’s not his first brush with the law. Kurniawan was sued in 2009 by Koch, who said that he had been sold five counterfeit bottles at a New York auction.
NOW WATCH: Executive Life videos
Business Insider Emails & Alerts
Site highlights each day to your inbox.