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Ex-Tiffany executive charged in theft

NEW YORK — A former executive with Tiffany & Co. stole a little blue box bounty from the jeweler’s midtown Manhattan headquarters and resold it for more than $1.3 million, federal authorities said Tuesday.

Ingrid Lederhaas-Okun was arrested Tuesday at her home in Darien, Conn. She was to appear later in federal court in Manhattan to face charges of wire fraud and interstate transportation of stolen property.

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As vice president of product development, Lederhaas-Okun had authority to ‘‘check out’’ jewelry to provide to potential manufacturers to determine production costs. Authorities allege that after she left Tiffany in February, the company discovered she had checked out 164 items that were never returned.

According to a criminal complaint, the missing jewelry included numerous diamond bracelets in 18-carat gold, diamond drop and hoop earrings in platinum or 18-carat gold, diamond rings in platinum, rings with precious stones in 18-carat gold, and platinum and diamond pendants.

When confronted about the missing jewelry, Lederhaas-Okun claimed that she had left some of it behind at Tiffany and that some had been lost or damaged, the complaint said. But an investigation found that Lederhaas-Okun resold the goods to an unidentified international dealer for more than $1.3 million, it said.

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