Judge: Mastro's diamond rings belong to creditors

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SEATTLE — A federal judge in Seattle says two giant diamond rings valued at $1.4 million do indeed belong to creditors of a Seattle real estate developer who has been charged with bankruptcy fraud and money laundering.

The Seattle Times reports that U.S. District Judge Barbara Rothstein has dismissed Linda Mastro's appeal of a ruling that the rings belong to her husband's creditors. Linda Mastro contends the rings are hers alone. She, too, is charged with bankruptcy fraud and money laundering counts.

Michael Mastro was involved in at least one Clark County project, the never-built Vancouver shopping center project called Eastgate Plaza, planned with a Walmart store anchor south of Northeast Fourth Plain Boulevard between 137th and 147th avenues.

The couple fled the country after a bankruptcy judge ordered the Mastros to surrender the rings in June 2011 while he decided their ownership. In the couple's absence, Bankruptcy Judge Marc Barreca ruled the diamonds belonged to the creditors.

The rings were recovered when the Mastros were arrested last October in France.

In a weekend order, Rothstein said that Linda Mastro waived her right to appeal the ring decision by fleeing.