Former Rhode Island art dealer to stand trial in September

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) – A former art dealer accused of defrauding investors out of millions of dollars stands trial next month in federal court in Rhode Island.

Jury selection starts Sept. 2 for Rocco DeSimone, who allegedly duped an inventor and investors by claiming he had access to deep-pocketed business connections.

DeSimone was convicted in 2005 of evading taxes after he sold a painting by the impressionist Claude Monet.

He then escaped from a minimum security federal prison in New Jersey and traveled to Boston and New York before surrendering.

His lawyer has said he is innocent of the new charges.

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