Wine dealer from Arcadia accused of millions of dollars worth of fraud

LOS ANGELES — Federal officials arrested an Arcadia wine dealer Thursday on suspicion of trying to sell $1.3 million worth of counterfeit wine and fraudulently obtaining millions of dollars in loans.
Rudy Kurniawan, 35, was arrested early Thursday in Los Angeles on suspicion of three counts of wire fraud and two counts of mail fraud U.S. Attorney’s officials said in a written statement.
The alleged crimes took place between 2007 and 2012, officials said. 
According to a complaint filed Thursday in federal court, Kurniawan attempted to have 162 bottles of counterfeit rare wine sold at auction in 2008 and 2012. The second transaction involved a third party as a “straw seller” because auction officials had become suspicious of Kurniawan’s wares, officials said.
Additionally, officials allege that Kurniawan obtained millions of dollars in loans to fund an extravagant lifestyle by understating his personal debts and offering collateral that had already been pledged to other lenders.
The case is being prosecuted by the U.S. Attorney’s Office’s Complex Frauds Unit.

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