A Florida man is accused of stealing about $300 worth of merchandise from a Key West Kmart, days after he purchased an $8 million private island, the Miami Herald is reporting.
Andrew Francis Lippi, 59, reportedly doesn’t lack for money. Days before his Saturday arrest, he had just signed off on an $8 million real-estate deal, purchasing Thompson Island, a private island just a short distance from downtown Key West.
According to real-estate website Private Islands, the property, once listed for $10.45 million, is one of the few private islands in the Key West area with direct access (that is, via a bridge) to the main island of Key West. Prior to being purchased by Lippi, the home was being used as an Airbnb, fetching $999 per night.
“The majestic home features four bedrooms, six bathrooms, a caretaker’s cottage, a four-car garage and breathtaking direct views of the Atlantic Ocean.”
Lippi told the Miami Herald last week that he and his family intend to live in the house “for a while.”
Though he’s able to afford luxury South Florida real estate, Lippi is facing criminal charges over the theft of a few hundred dollars’ worth of goods.
Specifically, he’s accused of attempting to swindle a Key West Kmart by purchasing goods, then attempting to return them for cash, with worthless items stuffed into the original boxes instead of the goods.
Thompson Island sits on nearly five acres at 4095 S. Roosevelt Blvd. and it’s the only private island with direct access to A1A by a bridge. Built by the legendary Thompson family, which included Ed Knight’s… https://t.co/TZcHDFhpwR
— ☠Keys Treasures☠ (@KeysTreasures) April 4, 2019
The items he’s accused of attempting to steal include a Keurig Coffee maker, a Hamilton Beach coffeemaker, eight light bulbs, and a bed skirt. He’s accused of attempting to replace the $160 Keurig machine with a basketball in the box, the Hamilton Beach coffeemaker with an older model, and the bed skirt with an old pillowcase. The total value of the items he’s accused of stealing is $300.59.
Unfortunately for Lippi, Florida law regards theft of over $300 a felony.
Lippi claims that Kmart bamboozled him, not the other way around. He claims that he purchased the bed skirt, but got home and found the old pillowcase inside the package instead.
“Basically it has to do with a commercial dispute… It’s very complicated and I’d rather not get into it.”
Lippi also claims that the Key West police and the Monroe County Sheriff’s Department were “wonderful” and some of the “finest people” he’s ever dealt with.
Andrew Lippi is not the first person with plenty of money accused of shoplifting goods worth a comparatively trifling amount of money. Back in 2001, as HuffPost reported, actress Winona Ryder was accused of shoplifting from a New York Sak’s Fifth Avenue location.