A Sea Cliff man was accused of stealing $1.2 million from the estate of his tenant, forging her will and having her cremated after he found her dead last year, federal authorities said.
A grand jury indicted John Derounian on charges of mail fraud, wire fraud and aggravated identity theft in connection with a scheme to defraud the estate of the elderly victim.
“Driven by greed, the defendant allegedly went to great lengths to perpetrate his fraudulent scheme to steal an elderly woman’s entire life-savings,” said Robert Capers, U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of New York.
Prosecutors said the 51-year-old suspect claimed to have found his tenant dead in her Sea Cliff home and then orchestrated a scheme to steal $200,000 from her accounts, sell her real estate for $1 million and then pocket the proceeds.
The fake will also made him executor of her estate, authorities said. Derounian, who was previously arrested, will be arraigned Tuesday at Central Islip federal court. Authorities did not release the woman’s name.