Fraud Charges For Executives At L.I. Firm

June 22, 2002, Saturday
Metropolitan Desk
New York Times
ISLAND PARK, N.Y., June 21 -- Forty federal agents raided the small headquarters of a company that leases medical equipment and arrested its top officers today for what prosecutors described as nationwide bank frauds that could total $200 million.

Just 10 days of investigation into a small part of the company's dealings found $6.5 million of fraud, prosecutors said in United States District Court in Central Islip, where three suspects were arraigned. A fourth was arraigned in Boston.

Prosecutors said that the company, the RW Professional Leasing Corporation, concocted elaborate schemes using up to 100 rented mailboxes as far away as California to send phony checks, sham invoices, bogus leases and other false documents to banks in various states. Based on those documents, the banks lent RW millions of dollars to buy equipment and lease it out, prosecutors said.

The schemes included multiple loans from different banks for the same medical equipment and loans for equipment that was never bought or leased, prosecutors said.

Those arrested were RW's president and co-owner, Rochelle Besser, also known as Rochelle Drayer, 66, of Long Beach; her brother, RW's senior vice president, Barry Drayer, 62, who operated a branch in Wellesley, Mass.; another brother, Roger Drayer, 59, of Long Beach, who holds various titles; and Roger Drayer's daughter, Jennifer Tarantino, also known as Jennifer Drayer, 31, of Oceanside.

Copyright 2002 The New York Times Company