ALBANY, N.Y. (NEWS10) – The United States Department of Justice (DOJ) said Wednesday that Jacques Laventure, 35, of Brooklyn, has pleaded guilty to obstructing a federal proceeding by selling a mansion and estate that the U.S. Attorney’s Office was seeking to forfeit as part of a criminal case against his brother. Laventure is the brother of Jean Lavanture, of Saugerties, who was indicted in October 2020 for fraudulently obtaining nearly $5 million in Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loans and Economic Injury Disaster Loans (EIDLs) meant to help legitimate businesses during the pandemic.
As part of Jean Laventure’s prosecution, the U.S. Attorney’s Office tried to forfeit a mansion and estate in Byram Township, New Jersey, that Jean Laventure bought with nearly $850,000 in fraud proceeds. In pleading guilty, Jacques Laventure admitted that between January and March 2021, he schemed to sell the Byram Township property, knowing that the U.S. Attorney’s Office sought to forfeit it. He also admitted to selling the property on March 10, 2021, for $443,920 net of fees, and knew that by selling the property to a third party, he was preventing its forfeiture in the criminal case brought against his brother.
Laventure faces up to 20 years in prison, and up to 3 years of post-imprisonment supervised release, when Chief United States District Judge Glenn T. Suddaby sentences him on August 25, 2022. Laventure has agreed to forfeit $443,920 that the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) has already seized and to pay an additional $331,080 in restitution.
The case was investigated by the FBI. It is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Michael Barnett and Joshua R. Rosenthal.