Israeli woman, 26, arrested and charged with exploiting husband, 77

Authorities arrested Israeli native Lin Helena Halfon after she allegedly tried to cash a check worth $1 million from her husband's bank account.

Arrest [illustrative] 150 (photo credit: Nir Elias/Reuters)
Arrest [illustrative] 150
(photo credit: Nir Elias/Reuters)
Israeli woman Lin Helena Halfon, 26, was arrested after she allegedly tried to withdrawal nearly $1 million from her 77-year-old husband’s account, claiming she was buying a yacht for the two of them. Halfon is married to Tampa businessman Richard Rappaport, who is president of Panther Medical.
Halfon was reportedly charged with “money laundering, organized fraud and exploitation of an elderly person,” according to The Tampa Bay Times.
Authorities arrested Halfon at the Tampa International Airport on December 16. She allegedly told Rappaport that a friend from Israel was bringing the checks to Boston and that she was going to fly to New York on December 15, the Miami Herald reported.
Halfon first tried to cash a nearly $1 million check at an Amscot, but employees refused, according to The Tampa Bay Times. She then allegedly returned hours later with three checks worth $333,333 each. Amscot employees once again refused to cash her checks, but this time one employee made copies of the checks and Halfon’s Israeli passport, adding that Halfon claimed Rappaport was out of the country.
When  the Florida Department of Law Enforcement and Tampa Police Department first contacted Rappaport he said he “wanted to give his wife the benefit of the doubt” and did not want to have her deported to Israel, Tampa Bay Times reported. However, a month later Halfon had not returned the checks and two of them, totaling $666,000, were reportedly cashed in a city over a thousand miles away, led Rappaport to cooperate with the authorities’ regarding a fraud investigation.
Dayna Titus, Rappaport’s daughter, said that she was unaware of her father’s marriage to Halfon.
“Titus believed that Halfon was ‘conning’ Rappaport due to his age,” FDLE Special Agent Victoria Morris wrote in the affidavit, according to US media outlets. Titus told investigators that Halfon “berated Rappaport on the phone when he asked for the check back,” in the affidavit, Tampa Bay Times reported.
Halfon does not have a prior criminal record in Florida, according to Florida media outlets. “We look forward to bringing forward additional facts to bring clarity to this situation,” Todd Foster, Halfon’s attorney, said.