NEW YORK (Reuters) - Dennis Kozlowski’s infamous $6,000 shower curtain will soon have a new home.
The custom gold-and-burgundy curtain, which helped turn Kozlowski into a poster boy for corporate greed, has been held in storage by prosecutors since before his conviction in 2005.
On Thursday, a New York judge ruled it should be released to Tyco International Ltd, the firm Kozlowski, as chief executive, looted of more than $100 million.
The shower curtain, which featured prominently at his criminal trials, hung in a maid’s bathroom at 950 Fifth Avenue in New York, an apartment Tyco bought for Kozlowski for $16.8 million in 2001.
Other items from the apartment included: a $15,000 umbrella stand, a $1,650 enamel and sterling silver notebook, a $17,100 “traveling toilette” box, a $2,200 gilt metal waste basket, and a $445 pin cushion.
Tyco is now getting all six items.
“At trial, the evidence established that said property had been paid with Tyco International Ltd. funds,” Assistant District Attorney Connie Fernandez said in court papers this week. “Tyco International Ltd. has requested that said property be released to them.”
New York State Supreme Court Justice Michael Obus issued the order releasing the items on Thursday.
“We’re complying with the DA’s request to take it,” said Paul Fitzhenry, a spokesman for Tyco. “The matter is still under litigation.”
Fitzhenry said he did not know what Tyco would do with the shower curtain and other furnishings.
“It’s not my taste,” said Herman Weisberg, the detective who seized the curtain and is now managing director of private investigator Sage Intelligence Group LLC. “But I bet some hedge fund guy would like to hang it as his trophy.”
Gary Zimet, who sells rare documents and other historic memorabilia on his website Moments In Time (http://momentsintime.com), said the drapery probably wasn’t worth much on the market.
“Very, very little,” he said. “If he paid $6,000, it probably wholesales for $500. “This is designer crap for people who have more money than brains.”
The curtain came from Seldom Scene Interiors of Nantucket, Massachusetts, which sent Kozlowski an invoice in January 2002.
At a Parole Board hearing in April, Kozlowski, who is serving 8 1/3 to 25 years, told the commissioners he had rationalized his thefts.
“I had a strong sense of entitlement at that time,” Kozlowski said, according to a transcript. “I was living in a CEO-type bubble.”
Kozlowski was denied parole. He was moved to a facility in Manhattan in January as part of a work-release program.
Stephen Kaufman, an attorney for Kozlowski, declined to comment.
The case is People v Kozlowski, indictment number 5259/2002, New York State Supreme Court, New York County.
Reporting By Karen Freifeld; Editing by Leslie Gevirtz