Husband of Slain NYC Art Gallery Owner Arrested in New York on Passport Fraud Charge

Husband of Slain NYC Art Gallery Owner Arrested in New York on Passport Fraud Charge

Daniel Sikkema, the husband of the late New York City art gallery owner Brent Sikkema, has been taken into federal custody in New York City on charges related to passport fraud. The arrest comes amidst an ongoing investigation into the murder of Brent Sikkema in Brazil.

Arrest and Allegations

Daniel Sikkema was apprehended on Wednesday in New York, where he faces charges of passport fraud. This arrest is connected to the broader investigation into the tragic death of Brent Sikkema, who was killed in Rio de Janeiro on January 16.

According to court documents filed by the FBI, Daniel Sikkema allegedly provided false information on an application for a lost passport for the couple’s son. The application was submitted approximately three weeks after Brent Sikkema’s murder.

Background of the Case

Brent Sikkema was fatally stabbed at his Rio de Janeiro home on January 14 by Alejandro Triana, a Cuban national who confessed to the crime. Triana claimed that Daniel Sikkema had paid him $200,000 to carry out the murder.

The custody battle between Daniel and Brent Sikkema over their 13-year-old son had been ongoing since May 2023. Custody proceedings escalated in January, coinciding with discussions about their divorce settlement.

Legal Proceedings and Allegations of Passport Misuse

Despite Brent Sikkema having possession of their son’s passports as part of a custody agreement, Daniel Sikkema allegedly attempted to obtain the passports in January. He cited travel plans as the reason for needing the documents.

However, concerns arose regarding Daniel Sikkema’s intentions when Brazilian authorities charged him with Brent Sikkema’s murder. The executor of Brent Sikkema’s estate feared that Daniel Sikkema would flee to Cuba with their son.

Investigation and Surveillance Footage

Surveillance footage obtained by investigators showed Alejandro Triana entering Brent Sikkema’s home with a key allegedly mailed to him by Daniel Sikkema from the United States. Triana was subsequently arrested on January 15 in a city bordering Bolivia.

Autopsy reports revealed that Brent Sikkema had been stabbed 18 times, predominantly in the neck and chest. These findings corroborated Triana’s confession to Brazilian law enforcement.

Ongoing Legal Proceedings

As Brazilian authorities seek Daniel Sikkema’s extradition to face charges in connection with Brent Sikkema’s murder, the FBI continues its investigation into passport fraud allegations. Daniel Sikkema remains in custody awaiting further legal proceedings in New York.

Conclusion

The arrest of Daniel Sikkema in New York sheds light on the complex legal and personal dynamics surrounding the tragic death of Brent Sikkema in Brazil. As the investigation unfolds, authorities are working to ensure justice is served in this harrowing case.