fbpx

Crime and Punishment

Arthur MondellaWhen property is used in the commission of a crime or when it is purchased with the proceeds of a criminal act, government offices can request that the property be given to them through the process of civil forfeiture. This is true even when the person who owned the property has since passed away.

By any reasonable measure, Arthur Mondella was a very successful man. His business, Dell's Maraschino Cherries, generated annual revenue of approximately $20 million. Not surprisingly, this earned Mondella the nickname "Cherry King." That, however, was not enough for Mondella.

While investigators were looking into an unrelated matter at his Brooklyn factory, they noticed a strong smell of marijuana. This led them to discover that some shelving hid an entrance to the basement, where Mondella had set up an illegal marijuana growing operation. Rather than face criminal charges for his activities, Mondella committed suicide. He left his estate, including the cherry business, to his three daughters and sister. Each received a share.

According to DNAInfo, in "DA Eyes $8.5M Estate of Maraschino Mogul Who Killed Himself After Pot Bust," the Brooklyn District Attorney whose office discovered the marijuana is seeking to have some of the estate forfeited to it. It is not currently known how much of the estate the district attorney will seek in a civil forfeiture action.

Nevertheless, it has the potential to be quite substantial and cause disruption to the cherry business. The same property used to grow the marijuana was the same property used to produce the cherries. For now, the lesson to be learned from this case is that if you want your family to inherit your legitimate business, do not complicate your estate by running an illegal enterprise on the side.

You can learn more about this topic as well as other strategies on our website under the tab entitled: estate planning in Virginia. Be sure you also sign up for our complimentary e-newsletter so that you may be informed of all the latest issues that could affect you, your loved ones and your estate planning.  However, proper estate planning is not a do-it-yourself project.  Why not call us for a complimentary consultation at 757-259-0707.  

Reference: DNAinfo (August 24, 2015) "DA Eyes $8.5M Estate of Maraschino Mogul Who Killed Himself After Pot Bust."

 

Like this article?

Share on facebook
Share on Facebook
Share on twitter
Share on Twitter
Share on linkedin
Share on Linkdin
Share on pinterest
Share on Pinterest

Leave a comment

LIKE THIS POST?

We have a LOT more where that came from!

We hate spam too. We will never share or sell your information.

Call Now ButtonCall Us Now https://jsfiddle.net/7h5246b8/

Request a free consultation

We hate spam too. We will never share or sell your information.

We've been putting together as many resources as possible so that we can continue to help:

  • If you’re a current client with a signing appointment or a prospective client with a consultation and would prefer that meeting take place in your own home, we can accomplish that with a little bit of pre-planning on our part and with the addition of a laptop, smartphone, tablet or other computer in your home to facilitate this virtual meeting. For those of you that need to sign legal documents, that too can be accomplished with the use of a webcam (FaceTime etc.), so that we can witness and electronically notarize all of your important legal documents.
  • We launched the rollout of our on-demand webinar early so that new clients and our allied professionals can view the important component parts of ‘an estate plan that works’ at their convenience.  That is available on our website.
  • Live video workshops will be produced as quickly as possible and certainly ahead of our previous schedule; we will keep you posted as these events become available. Given the ‘boutique’ nature of the firm, we rarely have more than ten people in our office including team members at any one time. During this period of ‘social distancing,’ we promise to have no more than 8 people at any time.   This allows us to comply with the Governor’s directive to limit in-person gatherings.
  • The best way to communicate with us is still by phone during regular office hours of 8:30 to 5:00, Monday through Friday, or, you can email any of our team members (that is, their first name followed by @zarembalaw.com).  We will respond to these emails as quickly as possible.
  • Please continue to follow the directives of our local, state, and federal agencies. For your health and in consideration of our team who is assisting you, if you’ve scheduled an office appointment or planned to drop off paperwork and are experiencing a fever, dry cough, or shortness of breath, please contact your primary care doctor for guidance and then our office to reschedule.

Thank you, Walt and the Zaremba Team

Coronavirus/Covid-19
Update to our Process

The unprecedented coronavirus pandemic has taken our entire country by surprise. We understand how difficult this time is for America’s businesses and families.  However, we believe it is vitally important that we make every effort possible to continue to offer solutions that avoid disrupting our important partnership with you, your family and friends.  As you know, estate planning is not something that should wait for a more convenient time, therefore the opportunity to address your important goals both during and after this crisis should not wait.  To that end, we have added the option of a ‘virtual consultation’ to our office process.  You will now have a choice of either meeting with us in our office or in the comfort of your own home.