Christine in Chinatown

chinatown5 chris-blue-ice

I just watched Christine’s favorite movie, Chinatown. What did she see in this movie about false deeds of trust, and incest. A couple of months after Rosamond drowned under suspicious circumstances of too much salt water in her lungs, I searched to see if she had formed any other partnerships, other then the one she formed with Lawrence Chazen, a tax specialist for the Getty family. My father did not know about this partnership, he having formed a partnership with his two daughters a month before. I informed him there was a dispute between the IRS, and folks taking a tax right-off on lithographs.

Chazen was my father’s private lender who told him about the artist, Garth Benton, whose father served time for making false deeds of trust. Christine had formed seven partnerships. I did not have time to look at them, which I regret. Vic told me the Benton’s were in trouble with IRS. I do not own a picture of how my sister drowned, how she ended up in the ocean, the place she feared would take her life one day.  I suspect the movie poster was inspired by a Rosamond print that were everywhere!

Chazen is a CEO of Nobel Oil and put together Noble Cayman with Noble Switzerland. He is a Tax Attorney first class. When the judge did not allow Garth to be Executor, Chazen gave it a go, and he was shot down. Why was Chazen so urgent to get control of Rosamond’s legacy? The day of the funeral, Rosemary and Shannon had a big fight over missing papers. Chazen is a partner of the Getty and Nancy Pelosi family, and was a partner of Gavin Newson, when he was Mayor of San Francisco, a city that gave birth to the Keane family dynasty. These folks are partners of Marc Leland, another CEO of Noble Oil. All these people love a good tax break when they see one! Christine and Garth were looking at jail time.

In the photo of Chazen below you will see the lithograph ‘Lena and Her Sisters’ that were part of the family partnership series, that Pierrot said she had nothing to do with. I told my sixteen year old daughter and her mother to not have anything to do with these people. Heather got on the phone and told her aunt Linda, and her drunken attorney husband, that her family is connected with the Gettys and, other oil executives. I am sure they encourage Heather to ditch the old man, and get with Vicki and Stacey.

Jon Presco

Copyright 2014


During the late 1970’s, wealthy taxpayers and their accountants started expanding the boundaries of tax-shelter law. Millions in deductions were claimed for the purchase of such exotica as the master plates for lithographs, or the right to reproduce an image on wallpaper and tablecloths.

The boundaries were widened so far, in fact, that the Internal Revenue Service decided things were getting out of hand and cracked down on what it considered tax-shelter abuses, denying thousands of such claims.

Some taxpayers are starting to fight back. The nation’s first case involving the use of master lithographs as a tax shelter went to trial recently in Federal Tax Court in Manhattan.

Members of Gavin Newsom’s wine, restaurant, bar, resort and real estate partnerships since 1991:

Kevin & Bronwyn Brunner, John Burton, Casey and Michelle Cadwell, Bob and Barbara Callan, Frank Caufield, Donna Chazen, Lawrence Chazen, Joe & Victoria Cotchett, Michael & Hilary Decesare, Philip DeLimur, Don Dianda, Gretchen Dianda, Edward Everett, Richard Freemon, James Fuller, Stanlee Gatti, Robert Gerry, Andrew Getty, Ann Getty, Anna Getty, Chris Getty, Gordon Getty, Mark Getty, Peter Getty, Ronald Getty, Tara Getty, William “Billy” Getty, Robert Goldberg, Florianne Gordon, Stu Gordon, Gordon Goletto, David Goodman, Arthur Groza, Richard & Martha Guggenhime, Tony and Anthony Guilfoyle, Shelly Guyer, James & Shea Halligan, Bob & Jill Hamer, Erin Howard, Thomas Huntington, Isolep Enterprises (Paul and Nancy Pelosi family personal investment company), Peter Jacobi, Gaye Jenkins, Jeffrey Kanbar, Chad Kawai, David Lamonde, John Larson, Rob Lavoie, Leavitt/Weaver interior designers, Marc Leland, Maryon Davies Lewis, Anne McCutcheon, Chris McCutcheon, Ross McGowan, Rich McNally, Robert & Carole McNeil, Paul Mohun, Robert Mohun, Jeff Morin, Sara Moughan, Terry Moughan, Brian Mueth, Bob Naify, Marshall Naify, John Nees, Barbara Newsom, Brennan Newsom, Catherine & David Newsom, Gavin Newsom, Patrick Newsom,

Tessa Newsom, William Newsom, John O’Hara, Jack Owsley, Pacific Design, Matt Pelosi, Robynne Piggott, James Samuel Powers, Elizabeth Rice, Jeremy Scherer, Paul Scherer, Gary Schnitzer, Steve & Theresa Selover, Steve Siino, Trevor Traina, Chris Vietor, Francesca Vietor, Kenneth Weeman, Nicki West, Justin & Aridne Williams, Kevin Williams, Thomas & Kiyoko Woodhouse.

chazen-gal2I am a member in good standing of the State Bar of California and an attorney
on record for 50% interest in Shannon Rosamond. In my 16 years as a member of
the State Bar California, I have never experienced a more deliberate fraud on
any court or more reckless and calculated attempt to fraudulently take control
of a probate estate at the exclusion of the lawful heirs and total manipulation
of a tester’s intent that the present efforts of Attorney’s Robin Beare,
Lawrence J. Chazen and Garth Benton, the descendants former spouse.”

“Over the specific argument of Ms. Beare, Judge Silver refused to appoint Mr.
Chazen. Neither Ms. Beare nor Mr. Chazen disclosed to the court the very
critical fact that Mr. Chazen has the largest single creditor’s claim against
the estate and is a former business partner and business associate of Garth
Benton who the court had removed as Special Administer just moments before.”


The litigation, whose outcome may not be known for months, concerns Mario and Marie Reali of Lake Success, L.I., and Stanley and Diane Feingold of Old Bethpage, L.I. In 1977, the two couples bought two of 20 master lithographs in a series called ”Earthworks,” created by Dennis Oppenheim of New York, who practices a sort of ecological art by digging trenches and lighting flares.

The Government charges that the series of images was produced and sold solely as a tax shelter in a deal arranged by the Reali’s accountant, among others, and that those who bought the series had no intention of trying to make a profit on a limited edition of prints struck from the masters. The 20 purchasers of the master plates, including the Realis and the Feingolds, took a total of $900,000 in tax write-offs for the works they bought, and the I.R.S. wants to disallow that $900,000 and recoup whatever taxes it lost.

In the case at hand, the agency disallowed $22,655 in depreciation, business expenses and investment tax credits taken by the Realis and $22,338 in benefits taken by the Feingolds. The two couples contend they claimed no more than they were entitled to, and decided to fight the I.R.S. in Tax Court. Their lawyer, Benjamin Lewis, acknowledges that no prints were sold, but he said prints were made and there was a genuine effort to market them.

”They bought this thinking it would work,” Mr. Lewis said. ”They’re entitled to take the tax benefits.” Up to now, the I.R.S. has been allowing taxpayers to settle such cases by taking deductions equal to the amount of cash actually invested in the shelters – which typically include borrowed funds – in this case $17,000 for each couple. But according to Victoria Wilson, I.R.S. counsel for the Brooklyn district, no write-off at all should be allowed in these two cases because no profit was intended. Losses Offset Income

The lithographic tax shelter is one of nearly two dozen that the I.R.S. has cracked down on, including investments in oil and gas drilling, real estate and movie productions. Generally, tax shelter investments reduce taxes by temporarily generating losses that offset otherwise taxable income. The investments are often structured to yield profits, in later years, that receive favorable tax treatment. An oil shelter’s gains might benefit from the depletion allowance, for example. Real estate profits may be treated as capital gains.

The tax laws permitting these arrangements are generally defended as a way of stimulating investment in enterprises where there is risk or whose profit potential is marginal. The abuse, the I.R.S. charges, occurs when they are set up solely to avoid or defer tax payments.

Roscoe L. Egger, the Commissioner of Internal Revenue, said that in the abusive tax shelter a promoter might arrange for an investor to buy a lithographic plate at an inflated price for a small amount of cash and a promissory note. The plate is then leased back to the artist, who is to produce the prints. But the artist may have no intention of marketing the prints and may never even receive the plate, he said.

Even so, the investor will claim an investment tax credit and accelerated depreciation, and because the tax benefits are based on the entire amount – including borrowed funds – the investor is often able to deduct more than the plate cost.

As of the end of January, the I.R.S. had 6,194 returns involving lithographic plates under examination. The I.R.S. said that as it processes tax returns from the late 1970’s and early 1980’s, it is finding that master plates and limited-edition prints produced in those years have been grossly overvalued. A Panel of Experts

It has drawn together print experts in a panel to review prints and other items. Last year, the panel reviewed 660 items that taxpayers had said were worth $103.3 million. The taxpayers took write-offs accordingly. The panel recommended slashing the valuations on every one of the items by a total of $102.6 million.

The Long Island taxpayers paid $73,000 each for the master plates of ”Land Cage” and ”Ghost Trip,” works for which Mr. Oppenheim was paid approximately $2,000 each, according to the Government. However, most of the purchase price – $56,000 – was in the form of a ”nonrecourse” promissory note that does not come due until Dec.31, 1987. The I.R.S. held that such notes did not really bind the taxpayer to pay anything, because the loan is secured only by the plates and no other assets. Thus, the I.R.S. argued, the notes should not be included in computing the investment.

A new law incorporating that ruling, the I.R.S. said, has broken the back of that kind of tax-shelter scheme. But tax specialists said they are not ready to hold a funeral service for shelters in general. They said promoters just find another avenue when one street is blocked.

About Royal Rosamond Press

I am an artist, a writer, and a theologian.
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