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2013 News Releases

December  
12-26-2013 DA Rice & NYS Dept. of Labor Conduct Unemployment Insurance Fraud Sweep - Joint investigation leads to charges against 17 for more than quarter-million dollars in theft
12-20-2013 Farmingdale Hardware Store Owner Pleads Guilty to Scam Bilking LIPA - Schuman paying $35,000 restitution & sentenced to 210 hours community service
12-17-2013 Hempstead Man Gets Max 25-Life Sentence for Murder in December 2012 Shooting
12-13-2013 Queens Man Gets 17-Life for Murder in Freeport Gunpoint Robbery - Plowden and co-defendant met with victim to buy drugs
12-12-2013 Ongoing Investigation Identifies New Defendant & Over 50 New Victims in Scam Modeling Agency Case - Grand jury indicts personal assistant of modeling agency CEO; Victims still coming forward
12-11-2013 Final Defendant Sentenced to Prison for Violent North Bellmore Home Invasion - Arroyo gets 25 years for role in terrifying attack
12-11-2013 Hempstead Man Sentenced to 12 Years in Prison for Two Gunpoint Robberies in Westbury
12-06-2013 Lynbrook Man Receives Maximum Sentence, Upstate Prison Time After 12th DWI Conviction - Crane hit two senior citizens while driving unlicensed with a .20% BAC
November  
11-26-2013 Tip to DA Rice's Animal Crimes Unit Leads to Arrest & Joint Effort with NCPD, Hempstead Animal Shelter & North Shore Animal League - Three pit bull mixes being rehabilitated
11-25-2013 ID Thieves Who Targeted MTA Railroad Customers Arraigned on Grand Jury Indictment - New defendant, who has fled the country, also charged
11-22-2013 New Cassel Man Receives Max Sentence of 25 Years in Prison for Beating Elderly Man Suffering From Alzheimer's Disease Into Permanent Coma - Victim had become lost before being viciously attacked
11-21-2013 NY State's Top Court Upholds Murder Convictions in DWI Cases - DA Rice: 'A monumental victory in our fight for safer roads'
11-13-2013 Former Oceanside Attorney Pleads Guilty to Stealing $10,000 From Clients - Levner, now disbarred, has reimbursed Lawyers Fund for restitution paid to his victims
11-07-2013 Elmont Home Depot Employee Charged with Using Company Donation-Matching Program & Religious Charity to Steal More than $111,000 - Had another $57,000 pending to be stolen before stopped by company investigators
11-07-2013 DA Rice Forms 'Council on Animal Protection & Safety' With Nassau Officials - Representatives from Glen Cove, Hempstead, Long Beach, North Hempstead & Oyster Bay
11-01-2013 MTA Police, Nassau DA Rice & Nassau Police Announce Arrests in Investigation of LIRR & Metro-North Ticket Vending Machine Scam - Round-the-clock stakeout and cyber-forensics result in four arrests
October  
10-31-2013 DA Rice, Victims & Advocates Announce Changes to 'Leandra's Law' Drunk Driving Statutes - Updates to the 2009 law will go into effect tomorrow
10-30-2013 Suffolk Man Charged With Stealing $10K Down Payment on Kitchen Renovation He Never Performed - Vadjinia, an unlicensed contractor, stole cash from an elderly Merrick couple for whom he had previously performed work
10-22-2013 DA Rice's Bed Bug Task Force Will Host Workshop for Landlords, Home Inspectors, and Social Service Providers - Workshop scheduled for Wednesday, October 23 at 9 a.m.
10-21-2013 DA Rice to Host Anti-Cyber-Bullying Program in Manhasset - "STOP Then Send" presentations scheduled through January
10-18-2013 DA Rice's Safe Driving Education Program Coming to Local High Schools - 90-minute presentation features testimony from real-life defendants and victims in drunk, drugged, reckless, and distracted driving cases
10-17-2013 DA Rice Marks First Anniversary of Nassau Human Trafficking Court - Court combats modern-day slavery and serves as model for upcoming statewide program
10-17-2013 Williston Park Man Sentenced to 1-1/3 to 4 Years in Prison for Hit-and-Run Death of Albertson Man - Kalenka ran over victim, fled the scene, and removed a damaged piece of his vehicle
10-16-2013 Fugitive CEO of Scamming Modeling Agency Arrested in Florida by DA Investigators - James Muniz fled New York last month as his employees were arrested in joint investigation by DA Rice and AG Schneiderman; Charged with cheating families out of more than $250,000; Hundreds of victims coming forward
10-10-2013 Lynbrook Man Convicted of 12th DWI After Hitting Two Senior Citizens Crossing the Street - Crane's BAC was .20%; will serve up to 14 years in prison
10-09-2013 Woodbury Man Sentenced to 1-3 Years in Prison for Stealing $600K in Real Estate Scam Victimizing Mother-in-Law - Tuozzo targeted mother-in-law, who signed documents for near-million dollar mortgage and multiple lines of credit
10-09-2013 Rockville Centre Man Pleads Guilty to Stealing $429K from Company where he was CFO - Cortese used cash on girlfriends, trips, car payments and faces up to 4-1/2 years in prison
10-08-2013 Freeport Man Charged With Stealing $23K in Workers' Comp Benefits - Coogan arrested after video surveillance showed him climbing ladders, carrying tools, working at construction sites
10-04-2013 DA Rice Seeking Stronger Laws to Protect Against Texting-While-Driving - Proposes three new reforms and asks Governor Cuomo to help make Nassau a model for rest of state and nation
10-03-2013 Jury Convicts East Meadow Man of Murder - Herber Guzman shot victim in the abdomen with a shotgun; faces 25 years to life in prison
10-02-2013 Brooklyn Man Sentenced to 25 Years in Prison for Violent North Bellmore Home Invasion - Cruz led attack and violently resisted arrest; all four defendants have been convicted
10-02-2013 Rockville Centre Man Charged With Stealing More Than $1.6 Million From Camp for Special Needs Children and Other Victims - Morgan stole more than $1 million from Camp A.N.C.H.O.R., hundreds of thousands from investment clients
10-01-2013 Jury Convicts Hempstead Man of Murder for December 2012 Shooting - Diquan McClough faces 25 years to life in prison for murder of Quavis Ford
10-01-2013 Suffolk Man Convicted of Stealing More Than $240K from Hospice Care Network - Mohamed worked as network's IT chief; spent cash on video games, gambling, and hotel stays
   
September  
09-30-2013 International Manhunt Results in Return of Elmont Man to Face Rape Charges - Amit Singh faces up to 25 years in prison for raping 14-year-old girl
09-25-2013 DA Rice Joins NY Judiciary in Launching Nation's First Statewide Human Trafficking Intervention Initiative
09-25-2013 Bethpage Woman Charged With Stealing More Than $5,000 from Elementary School PTA - Savage forged the PTA president's signature on four checks; now faces up to seven years in prison if convicted
09-24-2013 DA Rice Announces New York State White Collar Crime Task Force's Sweeping Recommendations for Modernizing Antiquated Fraud and Corruption Laws
09-19-2013 DA Rice's Safe Driving Education Program Coming to Local High Schools - 90-minute presentation features testimony from real-life defendants and victims in drunk, drugged, distracted, and reckless driving cases
09-18-2013 Employees of Hicksville-Based Modeling Agency Charged With Scamming Families Out of More Than $250,000 - Joint investigation between DA Rice and AG Schneiderman's offices results in three arrests; arrest warrant issued for CEO
09-16-2013 DA Rice Helps Effort to Rebuild Park in Hempstead - Organizes volunteers from her Terrace-Bedell anti-crime initiative and helps build new playground to give kids a safe place to play
09-13-2013 Old Westbury Man Pleads Guilty to Stealing More Than $4.3 Million from Clients he Represented in Real Estate Deals - Kalpakis, a disbarred attorney, forged paperwork to steal millions
09-06-2013 DA Rice's Youth Court Hears 300th Case - Youth Court hears cases of non-violent teen offenders; hearings are staffed entirely by student volunteers
09-06-2013 Long Beach Man Sentenced to 8 Years in Prison for Hitting Teenage Girl While Driving Drunk and Dragging Her 600 Feet - Victim suffered permanent scarring after being pinned beneath vehicle
09-05-2013 DA Rice and County Exec. Mangano to Host Gun Buyback Event This Weekend - Program to be held on Saturday, September 7th from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. at Bishop R.W. Harris’ Grace Cathedral Church in Uniondale
   
August  
08-29-2013 Belmont Park Employee Charged With Stealing Thousands from NYRA by Knowingly Accepting Counterfeit Cash - Cashier's two associates would then exchange betting receipts for real money
08-27-2013 DA Rice's Safe Driving Education Program Coming to Local High Schools - 90-minute presentation features testimony from real-life defendants and victims in drunk, drugged, reckless, and distracted driving cases
08-20-2013 DA Rice Joins Diverse Statewide Campaign in Calling for New York to Raise the Age
08-15-2013 Town of Hempstead Employee Charged with Deleting More Than 5,000 Files from Town Clerk Computers - Foder was aide to recently convicted town clerk; files contained info on marriage licenses and death certificates
08-14-2013 Freeport Village Cashier Charged With Stealing More Than $13,000 - Dubois would reverse residents' utility payments, pocket cash
08-14-2013 Port Washington Man Charged With Soliciting an Impersonator to Take EMT Test for Him - Shore offered $400 and a fake ID to take re-certification test
08-06-2013 Uniondale Man Sentenced to 10 Years for Robbing Two Victims at Gunpoint in Separate Incidents 15 Minutes Apart - Lane has a pending charge for tampering with a witness
08-01-2013 Williston Park Man Convicted in Hit-and-Run Death of Albertson Man - Kalenka ran over victim, fled the scene, and removed a damaged piece of his vehicle
08-01-2013 Statement of District Attorneys Association President Kathleen M. Rice Welcoming New Legislation Making the Assault of a Prosecutor a Felony
08-01-2013 New Jersey Man Charged With Bilking Local Contractor Out of $75,000 Meant for Windows in Lido Beach Home - Brown promised to purchase windows; used cash on fishing gear, vacations, and business supplies instead
   
July  
07-31-2013
07-26-2013
07-25-2013 Town of Hempstead Clerk Mark Bonilla Convicted of Official Misconduct - Bonilla threatened to transfer a male employee unless he obtained personal photos of sexual harrassment complainant
07-15-2013 Ex-Deputy NCPD Commissioner Sentenced to Jail for Preventing Arrest of Police Benefactor's Son - Jury convicted Flanagan of official misconduct and conspiracy
07-11-2013 Huntington Woman Charged With Stealing $866K From Locust Valley Employer to Fund Lavish Lifestyle - Maceluch used position as bookkeeper to forge more than 500 checks; spent cash on trips and shopping
07-09-2013 Unlicensed Contractor Charged With Stealing Nearly $200K From Elderly Clients - Cohan, of East Rockaway, promised driveway repairs; cashed checks but performed no work
   
June  
06-24-2013 Report: "Jesse Friedman Was Not Wrongfully Convicted" - Independant advisory panel says that the Review Team was "prepared to recommend without reservation that Friedman's conviction be overturned. But that was not how the facts play out..."
06-21-2013 West Hempstead Man Arraigned on Multiple Felony Charges for Fatal DWI Crash That Killed Two - Boutin faces up to 25 years in prison if convicted; alcohol and marijuana were present in his system
06-12-2013 Former Long Beach City Councilman Sentenced to 30 Days in Jail for Receiving Improper Unemployment Benefits - Jury convicted Fagen of 18 felonies for failing to report salary he received as elected official
06-03-2013 "Operation Flush the Johns" Prostitution Sting Results in Arrest of 104 "Johns" - Month-long operation used Backpage.com to connect johns with undercover police officers posing as sex workers
   
May  
05-30-2013 Oceanside Attorney Charged With Stealing $10,000 From Clients - Levner, since disbarred, stole cash from a couple he was representing in the sale of their home
05-30-2013 Twelve People Charged With Stealing Taxpayer Money Through Public Assistance Fraud - DA will seek full restitution from defendants who stole more than $370K from taxpayers
05-20-2013 Old Westbury Man Charged With Stealing More Than $4.3 Million From Clients He Represented In Real Estate Deals - Kalpakis, a disbarred attorney, forged paperwork to steal millions
05-17-2013 Merrick Woman Charged With Stealing $90K from Waterproofing Company Where She Worked as Comptroller - DiCostanzo spent cash on flights and hotels, concert tickets, and personal expenses
05-17-2013 Long Beach Man Pleads Guilty to Hitting Teenage Girl While Driving Drunk and Dragging Her 600 Feet - Victim suffered permanent scarring; Judge agreed to sentence defendant to eight years in prison
05-13-2013 Queens Man Sentenced to 22 Years to Life in Prison for Murdering Fellow Taxi Driver Over Disputed Fare - Heron stabbed victim three times in the chest during argument
05-08-2013 Merrick Woman Charged With Stealing More Than $450K From Her Employer - Rocca used position as bookkeper to embezzle funds; faces up to 15 years in prison if convicted
05-07-2013 Jury Convicts Uniondale Man of Robbing Two Victims at Gunpoint in Separate Incidents 15 Minutes Apart - Lane faces up to 25 years in prison
05-03-2013 Jury Convicts Queens Man of Murder in Shooting Death of Robbery Victim - Plowden and co-defendant met with victim to purchase drugs; faces up to 25 years to life in prison
05-01-2013 Ex-NCPD Chief Pleads Guilty to Official Misconduct and Conspiracy for Preventing Arrest of Police Benefactor's Son - Hunter sentenced to three years of probation, 500 hours of community service, and is required to film a training video for police recruits
   
April  
04-30-2013 East Meadow Diner Owners Plead Guilty to Intentionally Underpaying Employees by $500K - DA's Labor Unit secures plea; George and Thomas Strifas will pay back wages to 72 employees
04-30-2013 New Hyde Park Woman Charged With Stealing More Than $200K From Employer and Non-Profit Foundation - Efraimov faces up to 15 years in prison if convicted
04-19-2013 Oyster Bay Surgeon Charged With Stealing $37K From Private Insurance Companies - Rafiy billed insurance companies for procedures covered by workers' comp; faces up to 7 years in prison
04-18-2013 DA Rice, Co. Exec. Mangano, NCPD Comm. Dale, and the FBI Announce Largest Gang Takedown in Nassau County History - Months-long investigation results in 18 arrests for attempted murder, weapons sales, drug sales, and robbery (VIDEO)
04-17-2013 Hempstead Man Sentenced to 25 Years to Life in Prison for Depraved Indifference Murder in DWI Crash - Williams was fleeing police with BAC of .27 when he crashed into and killed 24-year-old Chad Whethers; Conviction marks Rice's third DWI-related murder conviction
04-16-2013 DA Rice Applauds Senate's Passage of Legislation That Would Strengthen Leandra's Law - DA's Office worked with Sen. Fuschillo to craft legislation
04-11-2013 Garden City Scout Leader Pleads Guilty to Promoting Child Pornography - Orenchuk will serve six months in jail and must register as a sex offender
04-11-2013 "Operation Refund Racket" Takes Down 12-Member Tax Refund Fraud and Identity Theft Ring - Members stole more than $60,000 in undeserved tax refunds
04-10-2013 Grand Jury Upgrades Charges Against Suffolk Man Charged in DWI Death of Nassau County Police Officer - James Ryan faces up to 25 years in prison for drunk driving crash that led to the death of P.O. Olivieri
04-09-2013 Woodmere Man Sentenced to Up to 4 Years in Prison for Stealing More Than $634K From Local Synagogue - Zucker used access as congregation's treasurer to steal money
04-09-2013 Bay Shore Attorney Sentenced to Prison for Bilking Clients Out of More Than $573K - DeBenedetto sentenced to 2 to 6 years in prison after pleading guilty
04-08-2013 Roosevelt Man Sentenced to 25 Years in Prison for Attempted Murder of a Police Officer - Officer shot Benitez three times after being shot in the arm and back
04-02-2013 Oceanside Man Charged With Stealing $18K in Taxpayer Money - Antonacci did not report $90K salary he received as a facilities director in order to continue receiving unemployment benefits
   
March  
03-27-2013 Brooklyn Man Pleads Guilty to Robbing Baldwin Radio Shack at Gunpoint - Navarro is final defendant to plead guilty; judge promises 8-year prison sentence
03-22-2013 Brooklyn Man Convicted for Role in Violent North Bellmore Home Invasion - Jury convicts Segura of multiple felonies; faces up to 25 years in prison
03-22-2013 North Bellmore Woman Sentenced to 7 Years in Prison for Stabbing Husband to Death - Boland pleaded guilty to manslaughter for November 2011 killing
03-21-2013 Raymond Roth Pleads Guilty to Conspiracy After Faking His Own Death - Roth faked death in an attempt to collect life insurance benefits for family members
03-20-2013 DA Rice Applauds State Senate's Passage of Legislation Allowing Repeat Child Endangerment Offenders to Face Felony Charges
03-15-2013 Jury Convicts Queens Man of Robbing Elmont Gas Station at Gunpoint - Thomas robbed gas station with BB gun; was shot in the neck after threatening off-duty NCPD officer with weapon
03-13-2013 Jury Convicts Brooklyn Man for Armed Robbery of Manhasset Jewelry Store - Gamble faces up to 25 years in prison; three co-defendants await trial
03-12-2013 Owner of Papa John's Pizza Stores Charged With Stealing $800K in Sales Tax Revenue From the State - Choudhary kept sales tax revenue instead of remitting it to the state from 2005 to 2012
03-07-2013 Jury Convicts Long Beach Man of Two Burglaries; Faces Up to 25 Years to Life in Prison - DNA evidence from a discarded cigarette butt led to Moss's arrest
03-07-2013 Elmont Man Steals $25K in Medicaid by Lying About Providing Care to Troubled Teenagers - Finley falsified paperwork saying he met with teens six times a month, but often didn't meet with them at all
03-05-2013 Suffolk Man Sentenced to 10 Years in Prison for Causing Crash That Severely Injured a Nassau County Police Officer - Officer suffered numerous injuries after Blanton intentionally caused Southern State Parkway crash
03-04-2013 DA Rice Applauds Senate's Passage of Legislation That Would Raise Penalties for Driving Drunk With a Conditional License - Urges members of the Assembly to approve the legislation
03-01-2013 Jury Convicts Two Queens Men for Violent Uniondale Home Invasion - Jerry and Robinson each face up to 25 years in prison for robbery, burglary, and assault convictions
03-01-2013 Hempstead Man Convicted of Two Gunpoint Robberies in Westbury Parking Lot - Summerville faces up to 25 years in prison for April 2012 incidents
   
February  
02-28-2013 Freeport Man Convicted of Burglary After Stealing Fire Emergency Vehicle From East Meadow Doctor - Shepard stole keys from doctor's office; also convicted of four other burglaries
02-19-2013 DA Rice and County Executive Mangano Take 330 Illegal Guns Off Nassau County Streets in Gun Buyback Event
02-15-2013 Ex-Deputy NCPD Commissioner Convicted of Official Misconduct and Conspiracy for Preventing Arrest of Police Benefactor's Son - William Flanagan faces up to one year in jail; Co-defendants Sharpe and Hunter are awaiting trial
02-15-2013 Freeport Man Pleads Guilty to Robbery and Assaulting a Police Officer; Will Serve 14 Years in Prison - Menjivar stole car and intentionally crashed into police after being cornered in an elementary school parking lot
02-14-2013 Great Neck Man Charged With Stealing $135K In Tax Revenue From New York State - McCoy kept withholding taxes from employees of his consulting firm
02-14-2013 Atlantic Beach Woman Charged With Stealing More Than $250K From Her Employer - Goucher used the cash to pay for dinners, vacations, and credit card purchases
02-08-2013 Nassau DSS Caseworker Arrested for Stealing Food Stamp Benefits Card - Castor used the card to buy himself more than $300 worth of food
02-05-2013 Long Beach City Councilman Convicted of Multiple Felonies After Receiving Improper Unemployment Benefits - Fagen faces up to four years in prison; failed to report salary he received as elected official
02-05-2013 Statement of D.A. Kathleen Rice Chief on Chief Judge Lippman's Bail Reform Proposals
02-01-2013 Woodmere Man Pleads Guilty to Stealing More Than $634K From Local Synagogue - Zucker used access as congregation's treasurer to steal money; faces up to 7 years in prison
02-01-2013 DA Rice Applauds Senator Fuschillo and Senate Transportation Committee for Advancing Legislation That Strengthens Leandra's Law
   
January  
01-30-2013 DA Rice and County Executive Mangano Announce Gun Buyback Event - Event will be held on February 16th at Grace Cathedral in Uniondale
01-29-2013 Freeport Man Sentenced to 47 Years to Life for Murder After Shooting Rival Outside of a Hempstead Bar - Smalls was convicted by a jury last month; two co-defendants previously pleaded guilty
01-28-2013 Roosevelt Man Pleads Guilty to Attempted Murder of Police Officer; Will Serve 25 Years in Prison - Cop shot Benitez three times after being shot in the arm and back
01-25-2013 17 People Charged With Stealing More Than $250K Worth of Copper Wire from the Long Island Railroad - 15 of 17 were LIRR employees; defendants stole copper wire and sold it for scrap
01-24-2013 Farmingdale Hardware Store Owner Charged With Bilking LIPA Out of More Than $40K - Schuman stole cash by submitting hundreds of fraudulent rebate coupons and advertising invoices
01-23-2013 Cement Truck Driver Charged With Killing School Bus Driver in Drugged Driving Crash - Ragen hit bus head on, killing driver and injuring five, including four children; he faces up to 25 years in prison if convicted
01-22-2013 North Bellmore Woman Pleads Guilty to Manslaughter for Stabbing Her Ex-Husband to Death - Boland admits to November 2011 killing; judge commits to 7-year prison sentence
01-18-2013 DA's Office Announces Auction of 23 Forfeited Cars - Forfeited cars include a BMW and sport utility vehicles

01-17-2013

DA Rice Supports Rep. Israel's Proposed Legislation to Prohibit Homemade 3-D Printed Magazines Along with Plastic Guns
01-14-2013 Charges Upgraded Against Long Beach Man Who Drove Drunk, Hit Teenage Pedestrian, and Dragged Her 600 Feet - Gutierrez's BAC was .30% five hours after crash; victim suffered permanent scarring
01-10-2013 Suffolk Woman Charged With Stealing More Than $316K from Great Neck Employer - Reyes faces up to 15 years in prison; spent cash on clothing, shoes, and jewelry