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Sunday, July 20, 2008

Judge's son, a fake attorney, held in fraud

Judge's son held in fraud; cops say he sold restaurateur's home, then kept the money
The Staten Island Advance by PHIL HELSEL - July 18, 2008

STATEN ISLAND, N.Y. -- The son of a retired judge is accused of pretending to be an attorney in order to sell a woman's home, then keeping the money for himself. Police say Renauld Gregg, 29, the son of retired administrative law judge Ronald Gregg, played the role of an attorney well enough to close the sale of an acquaintance's Stapleton home -- then kept the $156,877 and left his victim in foreclosure.

"Unfortunately for this victim, Mr. Gregg was not an attorney and never handed over the proceeds of the sale," District Attorney Daniel Donovan said. Renauld Gregg allegedly slammed the door in the face of detectives who came to arrest him yesterday morning at the house on Wygant Place in West Brighton he shares with roommates, but by last night he was being held in lieu of $252,500 bail. The suspect's father told the Advance yesterday that he was surprised by the criminal charges, although he was aware of prosecutors' interest. "Nothing other than bits and pieces, speaking with people in the district attorney's office, who wanted to speak with him regarding a transaction," Ronald Gregg said. "But the allegation that he was representing himself as a lawyer, I had not heard that." Renauld Gregg also was a staffer in Al Curtis' 2004 campaign for the state Senate seat currently occupied by Diane Savino. Police say the younger Gregg befriended Robina White in 2006, when he was a regular at her Caribbean restaurant, the Coral Cafe in Stapleton. He allegedly convinced Ms. White that he was a lawyer -- he even produced business cards at one point -- and offered to help her sell her Hillside Avenue home in 2007.

He was successful with the sale, police say, but didn't use the $156,877 in proceeds to pay off Ms. White's mortgage, instead keeping the cash for himself. Ms. White discovered her home had been sold when she received a notice of foreclosure, said Donovan's spokesman, William Smith. The lender stopped foreclosure proceedings after learning Ms. White was the victim of a crime. Gregg was arraigned yesterday on charges of second-degree grand larceny, unauthorized practice of a profession and resisting arrest. The most serious charge carries up to 15 years in prison for a conviction at trial. He has a criminal record that includes out-of-state theft and larceny convictions, and was convicted here in 2004 for what prosecutors described as a "financial-related" felony; he received probation. No one answered the door yesterday at Ms. White's two-story home, which is surrounded by a white picket fence. The Coral Cafe, meanwhile, appears to have been closed for some time. Ronald Gregg was out of town and hadn't heard all the details of the charges against his son last night, but said he believes it stems from a misunderstanding. "Hopefully, when the full story comes out, you'll find out it was a mistake, and can be resolved amicably," the retired judge said. Phil Helsel is a news reporter for the Advance. He may be reached at


Zoey said...

They've finally reached digging up the dirt on Staten Island?

It's about time!

Hopefully they'll keep digging and find all of the snakes slithering all over the island!

Anonymous said...

maybe this piece of crap was a bigger thief than a real lawyer and they didn't like it?

Anonymous said...

Children are the product of their upbringing. They will make youthful mistakes ,that may take them from the straight path..but they eventually find their way back...if the proper standards were displayed at home!
Is this again, a testimony to the politically and corruptly appointed NY's administrative judge's, and their own moral standards being reflected within their children!?
This is more substantiation, that judicial appointees should be employed, only after they have been vetted thoroughly, outside of OCA...and that includes the family members, they have had control over! Felony or extensive criminal records of children or wives or husbands, is indicative of poor control and decision making, by the person looking to judge others!
It appears that this could be like father, like son...from lack of control and poor standards, taught by this judge!
We have to dig deep for the best quality judges, that do not have this type of baggage at home!
Also, the judge is already attempting to coverup, knowing this child has had this type of background before...this is where the defect is and one that OCA likes for its control people! Retired and replaced by a clone!

Anonymous said...

Another national problem: we look to people who have no morals, as our leaders. We look to judges for impartial dealings and for integrity- for true law and order. And look what we have: people leading the continuation of the abuse of our legal system, and manipulation of law and order for personal profit. And since we have no honest leaders, we get what we get- more crooks.

Anonymous said...

This is unfortunate that people immediately assume that a child making a mistake is a product of their upbringing and example of their parents. Did Jeffery Dahmer's parents kill & cannibalize anyone? So silly. I know his father personally for close 30 years. One of the most upstanding, charitable people anyone can hope to meet. Volunteers, gives back to his community, mentors others to achieve their dreams. It is a shame that in American society people can be linked to something that has nothing to do with them.

Renauld was an adult. He should have been left to handle his issues on his own and this author should not have involved his father and his reputation. Silly people. I hope that non of your family members actions are indicative of you and your values. Instigating, unjust article and gullible readers. Sad, really sad. What did any of this nonsense have to do with his father's reputation????

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