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NY man accused of fake $11M Johns sculpture scheme

The Associated Press, Thursday, November 15, 2012, 8:23pm (PST)

NEW YORK (AP) — A New York foundry owner has been arrested on a charge he tried to sell a fake Jasper Johns sculpture for $11 million.

The U.S. attorney's office says in 1990 the well-known American artist provided Brian Ramnarine with a mold for a famous 1960 sculpture called "Flag" to make a wax cast. Prosecutors say Ramnarine made the cast but never returned the mold.

Court documents say 20 years later Ramnarine tried to sell a bronze flag made from the original mold without the artist's knowledge and using the artist's forged signature.

Ramnarine was arrested at his Queens home on Thursday. He has been indicted on a charge of wire fraud and would face up to 20 years in prison if convicted.

Attempts to contact Ramnarine were unsuccessful.

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