Brooks' trial focuses on $1.3M in jewelry purchases

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A government accountant questioned by defense attorneys Monday described more than a million dollars worth of jewelry purchased by a company once owned by David Brooks' former wife as an unrelated expense and not a business asset or investment as a defense attorney suggested.

Brooks' attorney asked Teresa Bernard, an accountant with the Defense Contract Audit Agency, whether the $1.3 million in jewelry bought by Tactical Armor Products, or TAP -- the private company once owned and operated by Brooks' ex-wife, Terry Brooks -- and even diamonds that David Brooks bought could be considered as income and assets of the company. Prosecutors have described TAP as a front for Brooks' illegal activities.

Bernard said no, she would classify such expenditures as expenses.

Brooks' attorney Kenneth Ravenell, forced by prosecutors' objections to rephrase his questions several times, asked if a private company like TAP should be allowed to spend its money on jewelry.

"I don't agree with that," Bernard said, later noting that the company's purchases should have had a business purpose.

Prosecutors have accused David Brooks of setting up and using TAP to illegally funnel money from his body-armor business, former Westbury-based DHB Industries, to pay for his stable of about 100 harness-racing horses. Brooks has been accused of conspiracy and fraud for allegedly looting his company of $5 million in personal expenses and illegally making another $185 million through stock fraud.

Under questioning, Bernard went through a chart of her audit of TAP's financial books, which listed thousands of dollars in items related to Brooks' horses in addition to transactions between TAP and a subsidiary of DHB.

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