‘Jacob the Jeweler’ to Stand Trial in Detroit

“Jacob the Jeweler” will stand trial on money laundering charges in Detroit after a federal judge on Monday denied his request to move the case to New York, The Associated Press reports.

Jacob Arabov, 41, who founded Jacob & Co., was arrested in June 2006 at his store in New York on a warrant issued in Detroit. Federal authorities charged him and 16 others with violating federal drug laws including conspiracy to distribute more than 476 kilograms of cocaine and laundering more than $270 million beginning in the early 1990s for a multistate drug ring operating out of Detroit. The Detroit News reports that a total of 41 people are now charged in the case.

Arabov pleaded not guilty, the AP reports.

His attorney, Benjamin Brafman, argued that it would be prejudicial for his client to stand trial alongside drug-dealing suspects and too costly to defend himself in Detroit, the AP reports.

U.S. District Judge Avern Cohn allowed his request for separate trial but refused to move his trial to New York, according to media reports.

Arabov, is a high-end retailer and jewelry designer famous for his diamond jewelry and oversize diamond watches and for his celebrity clientele, which includes David Beckham, Madonna, Sir Elton John, Naomi Campbell, and Sean Combs.