McEnroe Helps Nab Art Dealer

By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 26, 2009 7:04 PM CDT
John McEnroe gestures following his win against Swedish Bjorn Borg during the Showdown of Champions exhibition matches in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, Tuesday, Nov. 18, 2008.   (AP Photo/Lai Seng Sin)
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(Newser) – A prominent art dealer arrested today and accused of running a sort of art-world Ponzi scheme made one crucial mistake—he got John McEnroe mad again. The tennis great with the legendary temper triggered the investigation after being duped out of $2 million by Lawrence Salander, the New York Daily News reports. After McEnroe filed a civil suit against Salander in 2007, prosecutors contacted him and began their inquiry.

Salander, accused of swindling $88 million from investors, had a complicated system in which he would sell interests of paintings to buyers. He often double-sold the interests, said DA Robert Morgenthau. "Why sell it once when you can sell it three times?" McEnroe sued when he tried to collect a painting from an auction house, only to discover that someone else had a lien on it. Another celeb to sue: Robert DeNiro.
(Read more art stories.)