A newly-married 26-year-old woman has been arrested on accusation of trying to defraud her 77-year-old husband. She was arrested after trying to cash about $1 million in checks from the old man’s account.
Her arrest came just months after marrying Richard Rappaport in a wedding Rappaport’s daughter, Dayna Titus, said in an arrest affidavit that family members were unaware of the marriage.
“Titus believed that Halfon was ‘conning’ Rappaport due to his age,” FDLE Special Agent Victoria Morris wrote in the affidavit.
Mr Rappaport is the president of Panther Medical, a company that distributes braces and other medical equipment.
When told by investigators about his wife’s efforts to cash the checks, Mr Rappaport said he would give her the benefit of the doubt and did not want her deported to her native Israel, Tampa Bay Times reported.
However, Mr Rappaport answered “Yes” when investigators later asked him whether he felt he was a victim of fraud.
Ms Halfon reportedly tried to cash the checks at a branch of financial services firm Amscot. She said she and her husband were planning to buy a yacht, according to the report.
However, because the husband’s name was on the checks and he did not go to the bank with the wife, the bank employee declined – despite Ms Halfon apparently offering to pay $100,000, twice the normal fee, for them to do so.
The police were contacted after the woman whose request was declined by the bank employee, returned later in the day with three other checks of $333,333 each. Halfon’s husband, 77-year-old Tampa businessman Richard Rappaport was notified by investigators about the checks the following day.
Although Halfon reportedly told investigators she mailed the checks to her sister in Israel after a fight with Rappoport, it was learnt that two checks worth about $666,000 together were cashed by an Orlando man in New Jersey few days later, according to the report.
Ms Halfon’s lawyer, Todd Foster, told the Tampa Bay Times: “There’s a valid marriage between this couple and we look forward to bringing forward additional facts to bring clarity to this situation.”