For six years, Brent Farris eluded U.S. authorities by passing through many countries across several continents after pleading guilty to bankruptcy fraud.
On July 15, 2011, a U.S. judge sentenced Farris to 14 months in prison for failure to appear. The sentence ends six years on the run after he first plead guilty to fraud. Farris is the former owner of Farris Gallery in St. Louis.
In his 2002 plea, he admitted to transferring ownership of an oil painting to another party. Farris intended for the unknown party to auction the painting at Christie’s in New York.
Farris planned to conceal proceeds of the sale from his bankruptcy case. Instead, he received a 20-month prison sentence and ordered to pay $300,000 in restitution. Farris fled the country when he was released on bond prior to going to prison.
The U.S. Marshall’s service tracked him over a five-year period. During that time, Farris travelled through 14 countries on three continents, obtaining a fake British passport to assist in his movement. He used the passport to live and work in China, and to travel around Europe and Asia undetected.
Italian authorities detained and arrested Farris in Rome, Italy, using information provided to them by the U.S. Marshalls. He managed to escape from Italy, only to be arrested in Guadalajara, Mexico. Mexican authorities deported Farris to the U.S.
He is now serving both of his sentences consecutively for a total of 34 months.
Benjamin Brand Services – Chicago bankruptcy lawyer