Federal agents investigating iconic wine retailer Sherry-Lehmann spent nearly two days at an office complex north of New York City this week — hauling off items from a building where it’s believed that the retailer stored customers’ rare and expensive wines, The Post has learned.
About 20 agents from the FBI and the US Postal Inspection Service arrived at Blue Hill Plaza in Pearl River, NY at 5:30 a.m. on Tuesday with a search warrant in hand and stayed well into the next day, sources tell The Post.
“They were pulling stuff out of the building and had at least one truck with them,” a source with knowledge of the situation said.
The agents also set up a tent outside building #2, the smaller of the two properties at the complex, sources said.
The Pearl River raid occurred on the same day that law enforcement agents were scouring Sherry-Lehmann’s Park Avenue store, carrying boxes out of the store and placing them into a white van parked outside the entrance, as The Post reported.
A spokesman for the USPIS, Nick Moore, confirmed that the two actions were part of the broader investigation of Sherry-Lehmann.
“We investigate criminal matters with a nexus to the U. S. Mail, and enforce over 200 federal statutes,” Moore said in an email.
Sherry-Lehmann’s customers have been complaining for more than a year about wine they bought that was never delivered. Some customers said they believed the retailer’s sister company, Wine Caves, had removed their prize booze from storage and sold it to other customers, according to a New York Times report.
Wine Caves had pitched long-term storage services for Sherry-Lehmann customers who had more wine than they can accommodate in their own cellars or who were looking for a safe place for their pricey vintages.
Former employees of Sherry-Lehmann have told The Post that the retailer’s owners, Kris Green and Shyda Gilmer, moved Wine Caves from a warehouse in Jamaica, Queens to Blue Hill Plaza.
The move occurred a year ago and was not known to the New York State Liquor Authority, which oversees and licenses such businesses, or to the customers who allege that their wine was moved without their permission, including to other customers.
A spokesman for the SLA told The Post that Wine Caves’ current license expires at the end of this year and is associated with the Queens address.
Blue Hill Plaza is owned by Glorious Sun, a Hong Kong-based real estate firm which also owns the Park Avenue building in which Sherry-Lehmann’s store is located.
The real estate firm did not immediately respond to a query.
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