An 84-year-old New York City man was looking for a good time when he invited 17-year-old twin sisters out to dinner, the New York Times reports.
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Instead the man, Paul Aronson, ended up tied up in his “elegant” Manhattan townhouse. The twins also allegedly stole cash and credit cards, prosecutors say, according to the report.
The incident began after Aronson met one of the twins, Shaina Foster, on the website, Seeking Arrangement, which links rich, older men with young women interested in dating someone who could support them financially. On a second date on Oct.1, Foster brought along her twin sister, Shalaine, the report says.
For a few hours on Oct. 1, the evening looked as if it might turn into an old man’s fantasy. The three dined at an expensive restaurant in Midtown. Then Mr. Aronson invited the teenagers to have a drink with him at the four-story brick townhouse he owns on East 38th Street.
He bought a bottle of raspberry-flavored rum from a liquor store on the way, a defense lawyer said. But instead of receiving caresses or whispered flirtations, Mr. Aronson ended up tied to a coffee table for 20 hours.
Prosecutors say the two girls bound him with zip ties, took $470 in cash from his wallet and went on a spending spree with his credit cards, buying makeup and clothes, while he lay helpless on his living room floor.
On Wednesday, the girls appeared in State Supreme Court in Manhattan and pleaded not guilty to charges of kidnapping, burglary, larceny and related crimes, the Times says. Justice Michael J. Obus ordered them returned to jail without bail. Both face a minimum of 15 years in prison if convicted of the top charge, the report says.
A criminal complaint said both teenagers took part in tying up Mr. Aronson and rifling through his pockets around 8:15 p.m. on Oct. 1. Shaina Foster bound Mr. Aronson’s leg to a heavy coffee table, while Shalaine Foster tied his hands behind his back, the complaint said.
Mr. Aronson, who wears thick glasses, collapsed on the floor and could not get up. A neighbor found him the next day. According to court documents, Shaina Foster told a detective she did not understand why Mr. Aronson had reported the crime.
“He asked to do things I wasn’t going to do,” she told Detective Darryl Ng at the 17th Precinct after the girls were arrested on Oct. 21. “He is ugly, old and disgusting. I tied him up. I took his money and left. He was starting to creep me out.”
When they arrived at his house, Aronson gave the teenagers a tour of his townhouse and let them play with his Yorkshire terrier named Muffins, the report says. Things went awry after he poured them glasses of rum and asked them about their sex lives.
“Both girls were taken aback by that,” Mr. Kennedy said. He said Mr. Aronson also tried to grab one of the sisters when they initially started to leave his house, which precipitated the robbery. “This was an older man who was trolling these websites,” he said. “He was trolling for young girls.”
Brian Kennedy, a lawyer for Shalaine Foster, said his client only watched the robbery. “She got caught up in something not of her making,” he said. Shaina Foster’s lawyer, Theodore M. Herlich, declined to say anything about the facts of the case.
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