Man accused of selling fake jade antiques

POUGHKEEPSIE, NY — The state Attorney General’s office has sued a retired Newburgh physician for selling what authorities say are fake antique jade artifacts. The suit against Mircea Veleanu was filed last week by lawyers in the Poughkeepsie office of Attorney General Andrew Cuomo.

According to Cuomo, Veleanu is a collector of antique jade carvings who sold several items over the Internet that he claimed were made from high-quality jade. One customer paid $13,983 for Tibetan prayer beads Veleanu claimed were made of rare, antique jade. An examination of the beads indicated they were made of glass, Cuomo said.

The lawsuit seeks to permanently bar Veleanu from selling any jade artifacts unless they can be verified as authentic by the American Gemological Trade Association (AGTA).

Cuomo said the artifacts sold by Veleanu that are a part of the lawsuit were found to be fraudulent following examinations by the AGTA. The suit also seeks restitution to customers and a $5,000 fine for each sale, Cuomo said.