Queens County Criminal Court. Eagle photo by Andy Katz.

Criminal Court Calendar — Aug. 7

By Victoria Merlino


Pedophile Cop Talked Women Into Filming Child Porn  

A disgraced former NYPD Sergeant Alberto Randazzo was sentenced to 28 years in prison after coercing at least five women to sexually exploit children and obtain child pornography.

In some instances, the women were the children’s mothers, prosecutors said. Randazzo, would meet the women on the internet and persuade them to carry out acts of sexual abuse on children. They would allow Randazzo to watch the abuse over Skype and at least twice in person. The abuse continued from 2010 to 2013 on victims as young as a few months to eight years old while Randazzo supervised a police precinct.

“Alberto Randazzo lived a double life, publicly serving as an NYPD police officer while privately engaging in conduct to exploit the most vulnerable members of the community – our children,” said Acting United States Attorney Bridget Rohde. “Together with our law enforcement partners we will continue to strive to protect the most vulnerable among us.”

At his 2017 federal court sentencing, the government presented evidence that at least five women complied with Randazzo’s solicitations and sexually abused children in order to satisfy his sexual desires. Randazzo arranged to have an eight-year-old victim drugged so that he would not remember the abuse.

Three of the women Randazzo solicited have also been charged in the Eastern District of New York. Two have pleaded guilty, one of whom was sentenced to five years in prison and another awaits sentencing.


Flushing Tech Whiz Busted for Swiping $250K from ATMs

Eric Salazar, 33, is charged with grand larceny after turning two Queens ATMs into his own personal “slot machines” and pilfering $250,000. Salazar allegedly hacked into the ATMs with an unidentified friend in December 2017 by posing as technicians. Then, Salazar and a number of unidentified associates withdrew cash without having to put in a pin number or swipe a card.

Prosecutors say Salazar posed as an ATM technician and hacked machines in Elmhurst and Kew Gardens in Dec. 2017. Salazar allegedly forced the machines to dispense a quarter million forcing the machines to dispense a quarter of a million dollars

“As society becomes more tech savvy, today’s criminals are keeping pace and finding new ways to enrich themselves illegally,” District Attorney Richard Brown said. “The defendant in this case is accused of using his computer skills to hack into ATM software and collect the cash that poured out of the manipulated machines. This new trend is called ‘jackpotting’ and we are set to deliver big losses for gamblers who ante up. My office will continue to work with our law enforcement partners to stay ahead of the curve and prosecute those who find new ways to steal from others.”

NYPD Commissioner James O’Neill also condemned the high-tech hacker.

“As alleged, this individual brazenly posed as a technician in order to manipulate automated teller machines and obtain more than $240,000 in cash,” O’Neill said. “But following an NYPD investigation conducted by the Financial Crimes Task Force this person was identified, arrested and will be held responsible for his criminal actions. I commend the NYPD investigators, members of the Secret Service, and prosecutors whose hard work resulted in this arrest.”


Jamaica Man Charged With Gang Rape, Robbery After Attacking Churchgoer

Brandon Walker is charged with robbery and sexual assault after allegedly attacking a 50-year-old woman walking home from a Jamaica church in 2017. Walker and three accomplices robbed the woman with a fake gun before asking her to undress. She complied and the group of attackers forced her perform oral sex on them behind a garbage truck, prosecutors say.  

“The crimes that the defendants are accused of committing that night are despicable and are deserving of significant punishment,” Queens District Attorney Richard A. Brown said in a statement.

The three young men allegedly involved in the rape and robbery were all residents of a homeless shelter operated by SCO Family Services in Jamaica.

“We have zero tolerance for this conduct either at or outside of our city-funded programs,” Mark Zustovich, a spokesperson for the Department of Youth and Children’s Services told the the New York Times in 2017. “Thanks to the fast action of SCO, these individuals were apprehended.”


Alleged Rosedale Shooter Hit With Murder 2

John Jahlik Hines is charged with second degree murder for allegedly shooting a Rosedale resident seated in a van in June. Queens District Attorney Richard A. Brown said that Hines, 24, allegedly approached the van passenger and fired two shots into the vehicle early. The victim was hit once in his chest and another bullet entered his lower back. He died as a result of the gunshot wounds.

“This is yet another senseless act of gun violence in our community,” Brown said. “The defendant is alleged to have shot and killed a 26-year-old man in the early morning hours of June 3, 2018. The defendant has now been apprehended and faces a long term of incarceration.”


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