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Case 3:17-mj-00072 Document 1 Filed 06/06/17 Page 1 of 12

AO 91 (Rev. 11/11) Criminal Complaint

UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT


for the
District of Oregon FILE1(6JlN'1716:52USOC-ORP
United States of America )
v. )
Ryan Gerard Griffin,
) Case No.
Valerie Lindsay Marchant )
)
)
'17 -MJ-72 y 1- ;i_
)
Defendant(s)

CRIMINAL COMPLAINT
I, the complainant in this case, state that the following is true to the best of my knowledge and belief.
On or about the date(s) of April 28, 2017 to May 30, 2017 in the county of Multnomah in the
District of Oregon , the defendant(s) violated:

Code Section Offense Description


18 U.S.C. Section 2314 Interstate Transportation of Stolen Goods
18 U.S.C. Section 1343 Fraud by Wire

This criminal complaint is based on these facts:


set forth in the attached affidavit

-gJ Continued on the attached sheet.

Complainant's signature

SA Ronnie Walker
Printed name and title

Sworn to before me and signed in my presence.

Date: _J_UJIL (o,oJfJ[f_

City and state: Hh-ltt"; ,,~


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UNITED STATES OF AMERICA


ss. AFFIDAVIT OF RONNIE WALKER
DISTRICT OF OREGON

Affidavit in Support of a Criminal Complaint

I, Ronnie Walker, being first duly sworn, hereby depose and state as follows:

Introduction and Agent Background

1. I am a Special Agent with the Federal Bureau of Investigation and have been

since 1996. My training and experience includes agency specific training in all aspects of

conducting federal criminal investigations. I am an "investigative or law enforcement officer of

the United States" within the meaning of Title 18, United States Code, Section 2510(7),

authorized to conduct investigations into alleged violations of federal law. Over the course of

my career, I have led or participated in numerous federal criminal investigations. I am currently

assigned to the Portland Division of the FBI and have been assigned to investigate the theft and

interstate transportation of a stolen painting.

2. I submit this affidavit in support of a criminal complaint and arrest warrants for

RYAN GERARD GRIFFIN, white male, born June 11, 1971 (hereinafter GRIFFIN) and

VALERIE LINDSAY MARCHANT, white female, born July 24, 1975 (hereinafter

MARCHANT), for violations of 18 U.S.C. Section 2314 (Interstate Transportation of Stolen

Property and 18 U.S.C. Section 1343 (Wire Fraud).

3. This affidavit is intended to show only that there is sufficient probable cause for

the requested warrants and does not set forth all of my knowledge about this matter. The facts

set forth in this affidavit are based on my own personal knowledge, knowledge obtained from

other individuals during my participation in this investigation, including other law enforcement
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officers, interviews of witnesses, a review of records related to this investigation,

communications with others who have knowledge of the events and circumstances described

herein, and information gained through my training and experience.

Applicable Law

4. Title 18 U.S.C. Section 2314 (Interstate Transportation of Stolen Property

provides that whoever transports, transmits, or transfers in interstate or foreign commerce any

goods, wares, merchandise, securities or money, of the value of $5,000 or more, knowing the

same to have been stolen, converted or taken by fraud shall be fined under this title or

imprisoned not more than ten years, or both. Title 18 U.S.C. Section 1343 (Wire Fraud)

provides that whoever, having devised or intending to devise any scheme or artifice to defraud,

or for obtaining money or property by means of false or fraudulent pretenses, representations, or

promises, transmits or causes to be transmitted by means of wire, radio, or television

communication in interstate or foreign commerce, any writings, signs, signals, pictures, or

sounds for the purpose of executing such scheme or artifice, shall be fined under this title or

imprisoned not more than 20 years, or both.

Summary

5. A Portland, Oregon resident, hereinafter referred to as the Victim, was in

possession of a 1988 painting by Tom Wesselmann, titled Study for Monica with Tulips. The

Victim had Study for Monica with Tulips displayed at her residence until approximately two

months ago when a construction project forced her to remove several paintings off the walls and

to be stacked in a nearby room for safekeeping.

6. On or about May 26, 2017, a New York fine art gallery contacted the Portland

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Police Bureau to advise they were in possession of Study for Monica with Tulips. The gallery

expressed concern the sellers offering the painting were not the rightful owners. Subsequent

investigation by the Portland Police Bureau and FBI determined a relative of the victim,

identified as RYAN GRIFFIN (using the alias Jeffrey White), and his girlfriend VALERIE

MARCHANT (using the alias Jennifer Loree) conspired to transport and sell the painting to the

New York gallery for $60,000. According to the Victim, neither GRIFFIN nor MARCHANT,

have any ownership interest in or permission to possess or sell Study for Monica with Tulips.

Relevant Facts

7. From April 28, 2017 to April 30, 2017, the Victim left her residence unoccupied

as she traveled out of state to visit a family member. Prior to her departure, the Victim advised

GRIFFIN of her travel plans. According to the Victim, she is related to GRIFFIN and either she

or another occupant of her residence, a minor, has almost daily contact with GRIFFIN. The

Victim has known GRIFFIN's girlfriend, VALERIE MARCHANT for over five years. The

Victim has routinely provided financial support for basic necessities and lodging for GRIFFIN

and MARCHANT for many years. GRIFFIN and MARCHANT have been to the Victim's

residence and have knowledge of her art collection.

8. On May 9, 2017, a New York City, New York fine art gallery, was contacted via

their website's "Sell Your Art" page with an offer to purchase a 1988 Tom Wesselmann painting

titled Study for Monica with Tulips. Their "Sell Your Art" page instructs the reader to complete

a web form for those interested in selling or consigning artwork. The information entered into

the form and received by the gallery was as follows: Seller - Jeff White, Email -

wilcottchistyjo1223@yahoo.com, Phone Number- (503) 867-3086, Artist -Tom Wesselmann,

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Title - Monica Study Tulips, Year - 1988, Height - 13, Width - 17, Additional Information -

Sined (sic) in pencil.

9. The form mentioned above also included four images which were uploaded and

titled as follows: 0501170809.jpg, 0101170809a.jpg, 0501170810.jpg, and 1494318887031-

1797536017.jpg. The images depict the front, back, and signature of the Wesselmann painting.

The image titled 0501170810.jpg depicted a gallery label on the verso of the painting. In the

background of the photograph appears to be the top of the head of the individual taking the

photograph. Based on my review, the individual is a white male with dark colored hair and the

hairline resembles that of RYAN GRIFFIN when compared to a May 2012 booking photo of

GRIFFIN and May 2017 surveillance photos (which will be described later in this affidavit).

The image, booking photo, and surveillance photos have been attached to this affidavit. The

individual is also depicted holding dark colored rectangular device appearing to be a cellular

telephone.

10. A review of the properties of 0501170809.jpg, 0101l70809a.jpg,

0501170810.jpg, indicate they were taken on May 1, 2017 with a LG Electronics camera, model

VS500PP. According to www.lg.com, the VS500PP is a Verizon Wireless prepaid cellular

telephone. I have reviewed images of the model VS500PP telephone at www.lg.com and

observed this model phone to be the same in size, shape, and color as the rectangular device held

by the photographer as described in the above paragraph.

11. In three separate telephone conversations which occurred from May 9, 2017 to

May 17, 2017, personnel at the New York art gallery spoke with an adult male who identified

himself as Jeffrey White. All calls were to or from (503) 867-3086. In the first telephone call,

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White advised he had inherited the painting from his father. When asked at what age he first

recalled seeing the painting at their home, White replied he did not grow up with his father. The

gallery official told White the painting had a retail value of $95,000 and offered White $60,000.

White accepted the $60,000 offer.

12. During the above conversation the gallery employee requested White's address

for purposes of the purchase agreement. White provided his address as the Studio 6 Hotel, 4911

.NE 82nd Avenue, Portland, Oregon. When the gallery employee indicated he needed a home

address, rather than a hotel, White advised his permanent address was 12026 SE Kelly Street,

Portland, Oregon. Based on my involvement in this investigation, I know that 12026 S.E. Kelly

Street, Portland, Oregon is an address where the sister of VALERIE MARCHANT resides.

13. Following the initial conversation, the gallery official contacted the Art Loss

Register and was informed there was no record of the painting being reported as stolen.

According to the victim, because this painting was stacked behind larger paintings while being

temporarily stored away from the construction project, she was unaware the painting had been

stolen until May 30, 2017, the day Portland Police Bureau Detective Eric McDaniel and I first

interviewed her. The Victim noted there were no signs of forced entry to her residence.

14. On May 12, 2017, the New York art gallery employee shipped, via FedEx, an art

shipping box which contained a purchase agreement and a Certificate oflnsurance (COi) from

New York, New York to Mr. Jeffrey White, Studio 6 Hotel, 4911 N.E. 82nd Avenue, Portland,

Oregon. The purchase agreement was addressed to Jeff White, 12026 S.E. Kelly Street,

Portland, Oregon, 97266.

15. Detective Eric McDaniel and I have reviewed surveillance footage from the

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Studio 6 Hotel property and observed the art shipping box to be delivered to the front desk of the

hotel on May 15, 2017 at approximately 5:08 pm. That evening, at approximately 11 :28 pm,

RYAN GRIFFIN was captured on video retrieving the box from the front desk and then walking

to a nearby stairwell. At the top of the stairwell, the surveillance video captured VALERIE

MARCHANT meet up with GRIFFIN and then both individuals walk to and enter room 241. I

have reviewed an Oregon Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) image of and confirmed the

white female depicted in this video to be MARCHANT.

16. On May 16, 2017, at approximately 3:16 pm, surveillance footage captured

GRIFFIN depart room 241, walk down the stairs, and leave the box at the front desk where it

was stored until approximately 3:39 pm when a FedEx employee picked up the box. The box

was then shipped back to the New York art gallery where it was received the following morning.

17. After leaving the painting at the front desk, GRIFFIN was observed to depart the

hotel while talking on a cellular telephone. Based on my review of the surveillance footage, it is

my observation that GRIFFIN was talking on a LG cell phone, model VS500PP, identical to that

depicted on the LG website and the same model which was used to take the photographs

described in paragraphs 9 and 10.

18. Still shots from the Studio 6 Hotel surveillance video depicting the series of

events described above have been attached to this affidavit.

19. On May 17, 2017, the New York gallery received the art shipping box. Gallery

personnel opened the box to observe the purchase agreement signed and dated "Jeff White

5/16/17" and Study for Monica with Tulips, 1988 by Tom Wesselmann. Upon examination of

the painting and conferral with other experts, gallery personnel determined the painting to be

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authentic.

20. On May 18, 2017, GRIFFIN was arrested by the Tigard Police Department and

charged with Theft II and the Unlawful Possession of Methamphetamine and after being

detained by loss prevention personnel at JC Penney, Washington Square, Tigard, Oregon, for

shoplifting. At the time of his arrest, GRIFFIN had multiple state identification cards belonging

to other individuals to include one Oregon driver license in the name of Jeffrey White. Also on

his person at the time of arrest was one LG cell phone, model VS500PP. GRIFFIN remained in

custody until June 1, 2017.

21. On May 21, 201 7, the New York art gallery received an email from

etsase1223@gmail.com which displayed the sender as "Ryan griffin." This email stated the

following:

"I'm shooting you a quick email for my fiancee Jeff White. In regards to the Tom

Wesselmann painting he sent you a week ago. He had a family emergency and

has not been able to talk. He asked me to do so for him in regards of payment for

the painting. I'm not sure what has been talked about for receiving the payment?

I thought maybe a check or that it was to be wired? Please call me when you get

a spare moment or email me back as soon as possible. My name is Jennifer.

Thank you so much. Hope to hear from you soon. Jennifer"

22. On May 22, 2017, gallery personnel replied to the above email and asked for an

address where they should send a revised purchase order and a check. Later that same day the

gallery received a reply from etsase1223@gmail.com, which was signed "Jennifer Loree'',

instructing them to send the check to 4911 NE 82nct Avenue, Portland, Oregon 97220. I know

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this address to be the Studio 6 Hotel where GRIFFIN and MARCHANT were staying.

According to employees of the Studio 6 Hotel, MARCHANT continued to stay there after

GRIFFIN's arrest until she was asked to leave on May 23, 2017.

23. On May 26, 2017, gallery personnel received an email from

etsasel223@gmail.com and the email was again signed "Jennifer" although the sender displayed

as "Ryan griffin." This email stated the following:

"Sorry it's taken me a minute to get back to you it's been a crazy busy week with

working, moving and family matters! Here is the address so you can FedEx that

paperwork and check out today. Well I'm assuming it will go out today. Can you

please also make it out to Valerie Marchant. She is one of our dearest and closest

friends and our financial advisor. If you have any questions at all please feel free

to call at (503) 805-0031 or (503) 867-3086. Mailing address is as follows 3620

NE 82nd AVE #120 Portland, Oregon 97220. Thank you again for your business.

Jennifer".

24. Detective McDaniel spoke with a resident of 3620 NE 82nd Avenue, #120,

Portland, Oregon who advised she was a long-term resident of the complex. According to the

resident, a white female who she knew as VALERIE and I have determined to be VALERIE

MARCHANT asked the resident if she (MARCHANT) could receive mail at the residents

address, apartment #120. Detective McDaniel and I spoke with the owners of this complex and

learned MARCHANT was not the registrant for #122 but was observed to stay there the week of

May 26, 2017. I know this complex to be primarily used by transient individuals with short

term stays. On May 31, 2017 Det. McDaniel and I attempted to interview the residents of# 122

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and learned they had vacated the room that day. I believe, because MARCHANT was not listed

officially on any room within the complex, and the occupant of#l22 was a short term resident,

MARCHANT intended to have the gallery ship the check to # 120 rather than the apartment

where she was staying.

25. On May 30, 2017, the fine art gallery received a call from a female individual

who identified herself as "Jennifer" and inquired about the payment for the Wesselmann

painting. This individual left a call back number as (503) 317-3464. On June 2, 2017,

Detective McDaniel placed a telephone call to this number which went to voice mail. The

person leaving the voice mail preamble identified herself as VALERIE MARCHANT.

Additionally, the telephone provided by Jeffrey White in his original contact with the gallery,

(503) 867-3086, described in paragraph 8, has a voice mail preamble wherein a female voice

identifies herself as "Malory" or "Valerie." The Victim listened to the voice mail preamble and

identified the voice as that of MARCHANT. The Victim further advised she recognized the

telephone number as one used by MARCHANT.

26. On June 1, 2017, GRIFFIN had a detention hearing in Multnomah County relative

to a probation violation. At the hearing GRIFFIN was ordered released from custody.

Subsequent to the hearing, I visited the Tigard Police Department to review the evidence seized

from him at the time of his arrest. At that time, I seized the LG model VS500PP cell phone.

The serial number on the phone was observed to be 701 CYAS0061248.

Conclusion

27. Based on the above facts, I believe there is probable cause to believe that RYAN

GRIFFIN and VALERIE MARCHANT did knowingly cause a stolen painting valued in excess

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of $5,000 to be shipped from Oregon to New York for the purpose of selling it to a fine art

gallery and did so using the assumed names Jeffrey White and Jennifer Loree. I believe the

above emails from etsase1223@gmail.com were sent by VALERIE MARCHANT from an email

account belonging to RYAN GRIFFIN. I believe, following the shoplifting arrest of GRIFFIN,

MARCHANT attempted to complete the sale of the Wesselmann painting using the alias

"Jennifer Loree."

28. I believe the Studio 6 Hotel surveillance footage depicts RYAN GRIFFIN

shipping the stolen artwork from Oregon to New York. I believe the LG model VS500PP cell

phone GRIFFIN had with him at the time of his shoplifting arrest to be to be the device used to

create the photograph, file name 0501170810.jpg, which was sent to the art gallery in the

May 9, 2017 offering and I believe the "Jeffrey White" Oregon driver license in GRIFFIN's

possession was used by GRIFFIN in his attempt to conceal his identity during the commission of

this crime.

29. This affidavit, and the requested arrest warrants were all reviewed by Assistant

United States Attorney (AUSA) Scott Asphaug prior to being submitted to the Court.

AUSA Asphaug informed me that in his opinion, the affidavit is legally and factually sufficient

I II I I

I II II

II II I

I II I I

II I I I

to establish probable cause to support the issuance of the requested warrants. I respectfully

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request the court to authorize the attached arrest warrants based on this complaint.

--
Ronnie Walker
Special Agent
Federal Bureau of Investigation

SUBSCRIBED and SWORN to before me this M day of June 2017.

United States Magistrate Judge

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