MANHATTAN, N.Y. (PIX11) — The Manhattan District Attorney charged six real estate developers with crimes ranging from grand larceny in the second degree to criminal tax fraud. 

The developers are accused of defrauding New York’s 421-a affordable housing program. 

During a press conference to announce the indictment, DA Alvin Bragg said, “when we have a housing crisis like we have right now, every single unit of affordable housing counts.”

According to Bragg, the developers were accused of collectively benefitting from $1.6M in tax breaks “in exchange for allocating a certain percentage of the buildings apartments for affordable tenant.”

Investigators found the developers rented the apartments that were supposed to be set aside as affordable housing at much higher rates. 

The apartment buildings mentioned in the inducement are located in the trendy Brooklyn neighborhoods of Williamsburg and Bushwick.

Bragg told PIX11 News his office brought the case because the alleged fraudulent paperwork was signed in Manhattan. The developers appeared in a Manhattan courtroom Wednesday and pleaded not guilty to the charges against them.