Lerner & Lerner, P.C.

Former prosecutors with more than 50 years combined experience

Nassau County Criminal Defense Lawyers
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Nassau County Criminal Defense Law Blog

Record-breaking heroin bust

On May 19, authorities in New York City announced that they had seized a record amount of heroin in a single drug bust. After a year-long investigation, the Drug Enforcement Administration allegedly discovered 154 pounds of heroin hidden in secret compartments in a Chevrolet Suburban. The drugs have a reported street value of $50 million.

The investigation reportedly involved surveillance and multiple wiretaps. Two men received drug charges after they were taken into custody on May 17. DEA agents had reportedly listened to wiretapped phone calls and learned that the two men were planning to pick up a load of heroin from a warehouse in New Jersey. The men were accompanied to the warehouse by a woman who later drove to the Bronx by herself with the heroin.

Police say pizza restaurant was center of drug ring

Three members of a New York family were taken into custody after authorities accused them of operating an international cocaine trafficking ring out of their pizza restaurant. The immigrant family members, who were originally from Calabria, Italy, ran a successful pizza restaurant in Queens called Cucino a Modo Mio. The father, mother and son were all held without bail after they were detained for drug charges on March 11.

According to investigators in the United States and Italy, the pizza restaurant in Queens was the command center for a cocaine trafficking ring that spanned three different continents. Cocaine was allegedly purchased in Costa Rica, stored in Delaware and Pennsylvania and then shipped to Italy and countries in northern Europe where it was sold.

New York man accused of growing marijuana in his home

On May 9, it was reported that a 60-year-old New York man was taken into police custody after his home was raided by police officers. The raid is said to have occurred on May 7, though it was not stated what evidence prompted the incursion.

The Southern Tier Regional Drug Task Force stated that the raid took place at a home located in Dunkirk. Authorities reportedly found marijuana plants that were being grown using automated watering, indoor lights and other growing tools.They reportedly seized an unknown number of marijuana plants that were estimated to be valued at approximately $50,000. They also reportedly seized marijuana that had been processed as well as growing records.

In New York criminal cases, a plea bargain may be the best option

Being charged with a crime in Nassau County can be a daunting experience. The accused party may be given the choice of asking for a plea bargain instead of pleading not guilty and taking the case to trial. Knowing what is involved in each option and how it will affect the outcome is important.

There are advantages and disadvantages to choosing a plea bargain. Criminal defense attorneys may suggest negotiating a plea deal on the basis that the client could spend less time in jail than they would if convicted of the original charge, have less impact on the criminal record with lesser charges and take less time to complete. A jury trial can be more time consuming for the attorney, meaning a more expensive legal defense bill.

Ponzi schemes versus pyramid schemes

In the state of New York, there are people who seek to obtain money by setting up schemes. There are two major types of schemes: pyramid schemes and Ponzi schemes. While both types of schemes are illegal, they are set up and work in different ways.

For a pyramid scheme, a person may be drawn in by making a payment to the company in order to join. The person must then convince others to join in order to receive any profit. In many cases, the company does not sell any products or only provides products to those who have joined. Usually, the money from new members is used to pay the recruiting commissions owed to older members. These schemes often do not last long due to the sheer number of participants needed to keep bringing in funds.

4 people accused of dealing drugs in Brooklyn

Brooklyn police arrested four people in New York recently on the allegations of selling cocaine to clients from a Toyota Prius in shifts. According to the district attorneys, these four individuals organized their trafficking to make the drug available to customers all year long. The four face heavy jail-time on several different charges.

The four, cousins and their two friends, were indicted on 114 counts, including charges of conspiracy, drug trafficking, possession near school grounds and weapon crimes. As of the latest word, the cousins and one friend face 15 years to life in prison, and the fourth individual is looking at 20 years to life.

Charges of illegally possessing a firearm in New York

In the state of New York, the penalties for the illegal possession of a firearm can be quite severe. You may be charged with illegally carrying a gun that is registered, and if it is loaded at the time, you could face having a felony conviction appear on your record. Even if the gun did not have any bullets inside of it at the time, if bullets were within your reach, the law still considers the gun to be a loaded one.

Charges can also happen if you are illegally carrying a firearm. These types of cases may be especially difficult to defend against, as the evidence is generally fairly straightforward. It will be highly important for you to determine your best defensive strategies if you have been charged with the offense.

New York man pleads guilty to health care fraud at club

According to court documents, a New York health club owner pleaded guilty to health care fraud in federal court on April 20. The man is now facing a fine of up to $250,000, 10 years in federal prison and restitution.

Reportedly, the Springville health club owner submitted fraudulent claims to insurance companies between 2009 and 2012. The man claimed to have provided health programs to people who never attended any of them. The insurance companies then reimbursed the man for those programs.

Investor charged with embezzlement

A New York financial advisor is facing charges that he embezzled $20 million from customers, according to the Securities and Exchange Commission. The man is accused of stealing from his customers to provide funds for trading in unprofitable options. The SEC states that the man persuaded some customers to withdraw millions from their own accounts in order to buy municipal bonds. However, once the money was in his hands, he began risky trading practices involving stocks of major companies. When he did make money on his trades, he immediately wired the money to a separate account, which he used for his own personal benefit.

The United States Attorney's Office for the Southern District of New York has brought charges against the investor, including embezzlement and violations of Section 10(b) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934. In addition, he has also been charged with violations of the Investment Advisers Act of 1940.

New York pistol license application requirements

Some people make the mistake of assuming that, because they have a right to keep and bear arms, they can freely own and carry pistols. New York law requires that people must apply for and receive a pistol license, however, before a person can own this particular type of gun. Failing to get a license to own a pistol can thus potentially expose a person who has one to criminal charges.

According to the Nassau County Police Department, people must do several things in order to receive a pistol license in Nassau County. The applicant must either live in the county or operate a business in it. If the person is not 21 years old, they must be a member of the U.S. Armed Services. Any person who submits an application must also not have been dishonorably discharged from the military, and they cannot have been convicted of a felony in any state.