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James Meyer, a former studio assistant to the contemporary artist Jasper Johns, was charged with stealing 22 unauthorized works, which he then sold through an unnamed art gallery in Manhattan. Meyer, who worked at Johns’ studio in Connecticut from 1985 to 2012, made $3.4 million off of the sales, which totaled $6.4 million.

Meyer was assigned to protecting the works that Johns did not want sold but ended up creating fake inventory numbers and false documents for the paintings, which he photographed inside a binder that catalogued Johns’ authorized works. Meyer told the gallery in New York that he had received the paintings from Johns as a present and offered notarized documents that supported his claim.

Meyer, who was arrested at his home in Salisbury, CT on August 14, 2013, appeared in federal court in Hartford, CT where he was charged with interstate transportation of stolen property and wire fraud. The maximum prison sentences are 10 years for the stolen property charge and 20 years for wire fraud. Meyer was released on a $250,000 unsecured bond and will appear in federal court in Manhattan on or before August 23, 2013.

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