Manhattan Federal Judge Katherine Forrest has ruled that federal authorities may seize a 36-story Fifth Ave. tower linked to Iran estimated to be worth $500 million to $700 million.
“The court has found that, based on incontrovertible record evidence,” the building at 650 Fifth Ave. was a “front for the government of Iran,” wrote Forrest in her opinion. “The assets at issue… are subject to forfeiture.”
Prosecutors say the case may be “the largest real property forfeiture” in American history, reports the Daily News.
Families of victims affected by Iran-backed terror attacks, such as the September 11th terrorist attacks and the bombing of the Marine Corps barracks in Beirut, will receive proceeds from the forfeiture.
Real estate experts say the government could get up to $2,000 per square foot for the 380,000 square foot building.
“This is the best time to sell–it’s such a hot market,” commercial real estate appraiser Dan Fasulo told the Daily News. “You know the government. They’ll drag their feet and probably miss their chance to make a boatload.”