DETROIT – The celebrity jeweler known in the hip-hop world as "Jacob the Jeweler" will stand trial on money laundering charges here after a federal judge on Monday denied his request to move the case to New York.
Jacob Arabov was arrested in June 2006 at his store in New York on a warrant issued in Detroit. Federal authorities accused him and 16 others of conspiring to launder about $270 million in drug profits beginning in the early 1990s for a multistate drug ring operating out of Detroit.
Arabov, 41, has pleaded not guilty.
His attorney, Benjamin Brafman, argued that it would be prejudicial for his client to stand trial alongside drug-dealing suspects and too costly to defend himself in Detroit. But U.S. District Judge Avern Cohn disagreed.
"You should prepare yourself for a trial in the Eastern District of Michigan," Cohn said.
Arabov, a Russian immigrant also known as the "King of Bling," became popular among hip-hop and R&B artists in the mid-1990s. Notorious B.I.G., Madonna, Kanye West and Elton John have all worn his baubles.