NOVATO, Calif. – A California mansion owned by a now-imprisoned former Ukranian prime minister has become a headache for local officials trying to collect $2.1 million in back taxes and fines while fending off vandals.
Pavlo Lazarenko's property in Marin County has been vandalized by partying teenagers who made off with a Pablo Picasso lithograph worth an estimated $30,000, the Marin Independent Journal reported (http://bit.ly/Ltdhf4 ) Friday.
The thieves also took silver candlesticks, laptop computers and leather coats, police said.
The teenagers ransacked multiple rooms in the house and managed to get away before officers could arrest anyone, Novato police Sgt. Eric Riddell said.
The 19,500-square-foot home was acquired by a company linked to Lazarenko in 1998, just before his arrest in Switzerland on suspicion of money laundering.
Lazarenko later fled to the U.S., where he was arrested again and eventually convicted of hiding millions of dollars in American banks.
Marin County has filed claims for back taxes and late payment fines on the property where Eddie Murphy once stayed while shooting a movie.
Information from: Marin Independent Journal, http://www.marinij.com