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A wealthy Florida Keys man found the dough for an $8 million island off Key West –but was apparently too cheap to cough up the cash for household items he stole them from Kmart, according to reports.
Andrew Francis Lippi, 59, the owner of the Key Haven “Real World” house used in 2006 for the 17thseason of the MTV reality series, was arrested on a charge of grand theft over the weekend just days after he purchased the luxe 4.9-acre Thompson Island of Monroe County, The Miami Herald reported.
According to the news outlet, Lippi had swiped $300 worth of goods that included a Keurig coffeemaker, a Hamilton Beach coffeemaker, eight light bulbs and a bed skirt from a Key West Kmart.
Sometime between March 30 and April 5, Lippi bought the wares from the big box department store and then returned the original packaging boxes with other items packed inside, The Miami Herald reported, citing a police report.
Cops say Lippi put a basketball in the Keurig box instead of the $165 coffeemaker, put old light bulbs in the box for the bulbs, and put a pillowcase in the packaging instead of the bed skirt.
The Hamilton Beach coffeemaker was swapped out with an older model, according to the report.
Lippi denied the allegations to The Miami Herald but refused to go into detail.
“Basically it has to do with a commercial dispute,” Lippi said. “I will say this, that the way it was handled by Key West police and the Monroe County Sheriff’s Department was wonderful. Some of the finest people I’ve ever dealt with who were kind throughout the whole process.”
When asked about the theft accusation, Lippi said: “It’s very complicated and I’d rather not get into it.”
He added that he purchased the bed skirt from Kmart, but when he got home the pillowcase was inside.
According to cops, Kmart handed over security footage to authorities that showed Lippi with a cart that had the bed skirt in it, the report said.
A week before Lippi’s Saturday arrest, he bought Thompson Island from philanthropist Edward B. Knight.
The island, which is connected to A1A in Key West by a land bridge, is the only private island with direct access to Key West.
The lavish island compound features four bedrooms, six bathrooms, a caretaker’s cottage, a four-car garage and views of the Atlantic Ocean, according to an online listing.
Lippi was released from the Stock Island Detention Center the morning after his arrest, according to the report.
His arraignment is scheduled for April 18. Source