Katya Kazakina fills in an important piece of the lost Corot puzzle on Bloomberg when she reveals that Tom Doyle and James Haggerty were in prison together before they got involved in selling paintings:
They were confined in March and April to Ulster Correctional Facility, a medium-security prison 94 miles north of Sotheby’s York Avenue salesroom in New York. Doyle, now 53, had pleaded guilty to grand larceny related to the sale of a bronze Degas sculpture. Haggerty, 55, was convicted of vehicular assault, after a drunk-driving incident that caused serious injuries to two victims. […] Doyle and Haggerty started their sentences in the Ulster County prison within days of each other, said Linda Foglia, a spokeswoman for the New York State Department of Correctional Services. Haggerty was released in September 2008, and Doyle was released in December 2009, Foglia said.
Doyle’s criminal past has already caused Kristyn Trudgeon’s first lawyer to resign. But Trudgeon stands by Doyle:
“He is a very commendable man,” she said. “Tom just got his driver’s license renewed. He’s not hiding.” […]
“Let’s say he’s guilty as hell, which I don’t think he is, so what?” Trudgeon said. “The lawsuit is against Haggerty, not against Tom. I’d hope everyone would just back off and focus on the painting.”
Naturally, all of the publicity has brought attention from the Manhattan District Attorney’s office which is said to be starting an investigation of its own.
Missing Corot Painting’s Co-Owner and Sued Sales Agent Were Prison Mates (Bloomberg)