O.C. man who sold vintage Porsches charged with grand theft

An Orange County businessman will be in court Thursday after being accused of embezzling the proceeds of the rare and vintage Porsches that he sold on consignment, prosecutors said.

John Calicchio, 63, of Costa Mesa, was charged with 14 counts of embezzlement by fiduciary of trust, five counts of grand theft by false pretenses, two counts of diversion of funds and four counts of money laundering, according to a statement from the Orange County district attorney's office.

He is being held on $250,000 bail and must prove the money is from a legal and legitimate source before posting bond, according to the statement.

Calicchio could face a maximum sentence of 17 years in prison if convicted, prosecutors said.

Prosecutors said Calicchio, the owner and operator of EuroMasters Classic Cars in Fountain Valley, had consignment agreements with the owners of vintage Porsche vehicles between June 2010 and October 2011.

Prosecutors said he sold the cars at prices ranging from $25,000 to $47,000, and then diverted the sale proceeds to his personal and business accounts.

Prosecutors also accuse Calicchio of defrauding those who paid for the vehicle in full, because the buyers could not obtain legal titles for the cars because the owners holding the title were never paid in the sales.

Prosecutors said Calicchio, who was arrested Tuesday, closed his business a year ago and filed for bankruptcy in an attempt to discharge the debts owed to the owners and the purchasers of the vehicles.

This story was written by Times Staff Writer Rick Rojas.

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