Buyers Overpay for Accused Scammer’s Autographs

Bidders swooped into the Long Island offices of Nicholas Cosmo for an auction aimed at giving some of that $370+ million back to the people police say he stole from.

You could have bought some sports memorabilia belonging to an infamous figure on Tuesday, but you probably would have paid too much.

Bankruptcy auctioneers got to work selling off seized assets from Nicholas Cosmo’s Agape World Inc. headquarters in Hauppauge, New York, including several pieces of autographed sports memorabilia.

Federal authorities arrested Cosmo months ago on charges of running a huge Ponzi scheme and the financial company he ran is bankrupt.

Several people who say they were victimized by Cosmo’s company came to the auction.

Lou Piccoli Jr., 46, told Newsday he lost $567,000 with Cosmo, was among the bidders along with Sal Severino, who told the NY Post that his losses were over $1.5 million. He was outbid for Cosmo’s office desk but paid $275 for a signed Jose Reyes baseball. It was one of a number of pieces of New York sports memorabilia Cosmo had in the office.

According to the Post, Roger Walmsley, a commercial fisherman from East Northport, spent $1,600 for autographed baseballs from David Wright, Derek Jeter, Carlos Beltran and Tom Seaver as well as signed pictures of Mookie Wilson, Wayne Chrebet and DeMarcus Ware.

A football autographed to Cosmo personally by former Giants great Michael Strahan was also sold to Walmsley, who plans to give the Jeter ball to his daughter and the Seaver ball to his dad.

"I think I got some good deals," he said. "But it’s a shame the way I got these things. I wish I could help. These people lost everything."

Total proceeds from the 200 lots of furnishings, collectibles and sports memorabilia was over $40,000.