Hoping to add another notch to his indictment belt, grim reaper U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara alleged on March 15 that former Park Avenue Bank CEO Charles J. Antonucci Sr. “put his personal greed ahead of his professional duties” when committing a laundry list of crimes that included self-dealing, bank bribery, embezzlement and fraud. If convicted, the former Manhattan community bank president could face up to 260 years in prison, which may provide at least one reason why he is listing the 19-foot townhouse at 129 East 61st Street that he co-owns as part of Lexington Partners LLC.
Mr. Antonucci was arrested in Fishkill, N.Y., where he resides, a little over a week ago, so the decision to sell the five-story brownstone was either swift or not entirely arrest-inspired. Antonucci and Co. bought it in September 2008, a time when some were scrambling to sell and none were scrambling to buy. Purchased for $9.25 million, the handsome, bay-windowed brownstone townhouse was bought-and remains-configured as seven currently vacant units: a ground-floor office, two studios, a one-bedroom, two two-bedroom duplexes and one three-bedroom duplex.
The townhouse is listed through Leslie J. Garfield‘s Francis O’Shea for $8.5 million, so the owners are anticipating at least a $750,000 loss. Mr. O’Shea declined to comment, stating only, “Garfield prefers not to comment on the lives of our clients.” Nestled as it is between Park and Lexington avenues, the townhouse would be a good place for a foreigner looking for a Manhattan pied-à-terre with extra units for friends and family, a broker familiar with the property speculated.
And Brown Harris Stevens baronness Paula del Nunzio noted: “In the past, people favored the brownstone facade originally made fashionable by Mrs. Astor. Today, many buyers gravitate toward the light facade of a limestone, a Beaux-Arts, or a neo-Federal design, while others prefer the original, historic feel of brownstone.”
Mr. Antonucci, who upon his arrest became reportedly the first bank chief accused of trying to defraud the federal bailout program, could not be reached for comment.
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