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Prosecutors: David Brooks spent $353G on pens

David Brooks leaves federal court in Central Islip.

David Brooks leaves federal court in Central Islip. (Feb. 24, 2009) Credit: James Carbone

First there was the $101,000 diamond, ruby and sapphire belt buckle in the shape of an American flag.

Then there was $110,000 worth of gold jewelry - a ring and a neck chain ending in a dagger-shaped pendant. Next came the $60,000 stainless-steel replica of the 21/2-ton "Charging Bull" bronze statue on Wall Street.

Now add a $353,000 collection of upscale pens that David Brooks had his former Westbury company illegally pay for to support an over-the-top lifestyle, according to federal prosecutors.

Among the pens, federal prosecutor Christopher Caffarone has told a jury in federal court in Central Islip, were a $5,500 Montegrappa Animalia Limited Edition, in 18-karat gold; a $2,500 Pelikan Pyramids of Giza; and a $2,400 Krone Wright Brothers in sterling silver.

Testifying for the government Wednesday at Brooks' fraud trial, Jay Chin, president of Joon, said his Manhattan store had sold all the upscale pens to Brooks between 2000 and 2006.

Brooks is charged with looting his Westbury company, body armor manufacturer DHB Industries, of about $190 million. Chin said Brooks asked him in 2005, because he was being audited, to supply backdated receipts showing that much of the money was spent on standard office supplies, including paper clips and pens.

When asked by Caffarone whether Joon sold such supplies, Chin replied "no."

Brooks has maintained that he was entitled to have the company pay for personal and business expenses. On cross-examination by Brooks' lead defense attorney, Kenneth Ravenell, Chin acknowledged that he did not know whether the high-priced pens were bought to give out for business purposes.

In another development, Brooks' attorneys plan to argue in court Monday that their client is not receiving adequate medication at the federal detention center in Queens where he is now being held.

Brooks was transferred there last week from the Nassau County jail in East Meadow after correction officers found more than 20 tranquilizer tablets hidden in his underwear, according to several sources. The correction officers then did a strip-search of Brooks and found a ballpoint pen concealed in a body cavity, the sources said. Brooks had complained that the pens at the jail were too flimsy to write with.

Ravenell has declined to comment on the circumstances of the transfer.

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