Wholesaler Indicted for Theft

The apparel wholesaler is charged with stealing from two factors.

A Manhattan-based apparel wholesaler was indicted for allegedly stealing more than $800,000 from lenders.

The wholesaler is Payman Kafash, who is also known as Peter Kafash, 42, the Manhattan District Attorney’s office said on Wednesday.

According to the indictment unsealed Wednesday, Kafash is charged with one count each of grand larceny in the second degree and scheme to defraud in the first degree, as well as 75 counts of falsifying business records in the first degree. The lenders affected by Kafash’s alleged actions were Coface Credit Management North America Inc. and Westgate Financial Corp., both factoring firms.

“Factoring companies provide small businesses with an alternative to conventional financing,” said Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus R. Vance Jr. “Many business sectors, including the garment industry, rely on factoring to cover expenses, pay their employees and keep their businesses running. My office will continue to investigate those who jeopardize the integrity of this industry and make it harder for legitimate businesses to access needed capital.”

According to the district attorney’s office, Kafash between April 2006 and May 2010 allegedly submitted fake or altered invoices to the lenders in order to receive cash advances on customer invoices due to this company, Modeani Group Ltd., as well as other family-owned firms he operated, including Beinoni of NY Inc. and Bapaz Garments Corp. As part of the scheme, Kafash is also alleged to have sold the fake or overbilled invoices to another lender and provided false financial statements, as well as filed false insurance claims with an insurance company that insured the invoices.

The indictment is merely an accusation, and the charges alleged still need to be proven at trial in a Manhattan state court.