Police are reportedly investigating what happened to $1.7 million that vanished from a business account tied to slain Brooklyn real estate developer Menachem Stark.
The money was “improperly” removed from a joint $2 million account the murdered Hasidic man set up with partner Israel (Sam) Perlmutter, the Daily News reported, citing court documents.
An additional $200,000 is also missing under unclear circumstances, the paper said.
Brooklyn Bankruptcy Court Judge Elizabeth Stong ordered officials to review the accounts of the pair’s South Side realty company last week, following Stark’s brutal murder.
Stark, a prominent member of the Satmar Hasidic community, had a tangled business history and owed six-figure debts to several creditors and former associates.
He spent most of his last days pleading with friends and business partners for a large loan — and ironically may have secured the cash that could have saved his life in the days before his abduction on January 2, the New York Post reported.
But investigators started focusing on a much smaller unpaid debt after recovering the light-colored van used in the kidnapping — and tying the vehicle to a particular contractor, whom they have not identified.
Stark was snatched outside his real estate office in Williamsburg on Thursday, Jan. 2 around 11:30 p.m. His body was found in a dumpster in Great Neck, Long Island, the next day.
Police sources say he died of “compression asphyxiation” possibly from being choked or sat on during a struggle.
Investigators believe the abduction may have been concocted to scare Stark into forking over the money he owed and was not originally planned as a murder.
This story "Where's Menachem Stark's Missing $1.7M?" was written by Forward Staff.