Excerpts from New York Newsday

Trooper Acquitted of Possessing Steroids
March 15, 2005
Alfonso Castillo (NY Newsday)

A suspended New York State trooper was acquitted Friday in Riverhead of charges that he possessed steroids, but the jury could not reach a verdict on whether he conspired to buy the illegal drugs.

James Foley, 28, of Hauppauge, shut his eyes upon hearing the verdicts, as his family sighed audibly in relief.

After deliberating for more than three days Jurors were deadlocked on the two misdemeanor charges of conspiracy, one of which charged Foley with planning to buy steroids with the intent to sell them. The jury delivered verdicts of not guilty on charges that Foley illegally possessed steroids and a hypodermic needle.

Foley was arrested in a 2002 sting that also charged three other police officers, including his brother Tom Foley, a former Suffolk police officer who pleaded guilty to selling a controlled substance and is serving a 1- to 3-year sentence.

The charges against James Foley stemmed largely from a recorded phone call with his brother. In the call, Tom Foley said he picked up steroids James ordered from another trooper, Michael Christy, but had already sold most of them. Asked if he wanted what was left, James Foley replied, "Yeah, I'll take them."

The third officer in the case was New York City Sgt. Robert Grettler, who received 6 months in jail and 5 years of probation. Christy, who pleaded guilty, hasn't been sentenced.

James Foley's attorney, Sarita Kedia of Manhattan, said he never bought steroids nor had any in his possession. She said prosecutors offered a plea deal with no jail time and no record, but Foley wanted to "clear his name" and get his job back.

Foley thanked jurors in the hallway of the court following their verdict. As she said goodbye, the jury forewoman warned, "Behave yourself."

"I did," Foley responded. "That's why I'm here. I didn't do anything."

Reputed Mobster Pleads Guilty
March 21, 2003
Anthony M. DeStefano (NY Newsday)

Despite last-minute glitches that almost derailed things, Joseph Caridi, the reputed consigliere of the Luchese crime family, pleaded guilty yesterday to charges he shook down a popular Freeport seafood restaurant.

Caridi, of East Northport, admitted in federal court in Brooklyn that he not only extorted money from Hudson & McCoy restaurant but evaded nearly $250,000 in taxes from his various activities.

...Caridi's plea almost didn't happen after his attorney, Sarita Kedia, and government prosecutors disagreed over the calculation of the sentencing guideline range.

...Kedia said he faces 7 1/2 to 9 1/2 years in prison under sentencing guidelines.

Reputed Mobster Pleads Guilty to Eatery Extortion
March 20, 2003
Anthony M. DeStefano (NY Newsday)

Despite last-minute glitches that almost derailed things, Joseph Caridi, the reputed consigliere of the Luchese crime family, pleaded guilty yesterday to charges he shook down a popular Freeport seafood restaurant.

...Caridi's plea almost didn't happen after his attorney, Sarita Kedia, and government prosecutors disagreed over the calculation of the sentencing guideline range. After that was ironed out, Gold almost didn't accept the plea when Caridi balked at saying he was part of the Luchese crime family, as listed in the indictment.

...Sentencing was set for June 27. Caridi has been held without bail since his indictment in December. Kedia said he faces between 7 1/2 and 9 1/2 years in prison under sentencing guidelines.

Luchese Associate To Plead Guilty
March 19, 2003
Anthony M. DeStefano (NY Newsday)

Joseph Caridi, 54, the reputed consigliere of the Luchese organized crime family, is scheduled to plead guilty today to extortion charges involving the eatery, his attorney and other sources said.

The restaurant was allegedly the focus of a takeover by the Luchese family in 2001, a shakedown that investigators said ousted Lewis Kasman, the so-called adopted son of the late John Gotti, as an investor.

"For any number of reasons we believe this is in his best interests," Caridi's defense attorney, Sarita Kedia, said yesterday. She declined to elaborate except to say her client is expected to plead guilty to restaurant extortion and tax evasion charges.

Kedia said that it is expected that Caridi, of East Northport, could face a possible prison sentence of up to seven years.

Feds Cite Mob Role In Eatery – 27 Named in Racket Tied to Freeport Restaurant
December 12, 2002
Anthony M. DeStefano (NY Newsday)

The 36-count indictment names 27 people as defendants, including three alleged high-ranking members of the Luchese mob, as well as other members and associates, on charges they were part of a racketeering enterprise that included extortion, drug dealing, witness tampering and loansharking.

Among those charged were reputed Luchese consigliere Joseph Caridi, 54, as well as alleged captains John Cerella, 58, and Vincent Mancione, 38, and soldier Carmelo Profeta, 60. Also charged in the case were Hudson & McCoy manager Antonio LoFoco, 56, and accountant Alan Steinbach, 48, of Jericho.

..."The government allegations are extremely weak," said defense attorney Sarita Kedia, who represented Caridi. She believed he could make bail tomorrow.

"My client enjoys seafood, and the restaurant is known for having the best seafood in Freeport," said defense attorney Joel Winograd, explaining Profeta's involvement in the case. "He is a customer, not an extortionist."

Guilty Plea By Former Union Boss – Hughes Admits Taking More Than $2M from Local 372
April 20, 2000
Patricia Hurtado (NY Newsday) - Staff writer Curtis Taylor contributed to this story

Charles Hughes, once one of the city's most powerful labor leaders, pleaded guilty yesterday to looting more than $2 million from his union for personal expenses, lavish trips and no-show jobs for his relatives.

Hughes, 59, the ousted president of Local 372 of the American Federal of State, County and Municipal Employees, dropped his psychiatric defense and tearfully admitted that he had engaged in a spending spree bankrolled by the union between April, 1994, and February, 1998.

...With tears rolling down his cheeks, Hughes pleaded guilty to one count of grand larceny in the first degree before Justice William Leibovitz in State Supreme Court in Manhattan.

"I'm very, very sorry I violated the trust of the hard-working members of Local 372," Hughes said in a long, rambling statement in which he also apologized to his wife and to three mayors he was close to, Rudolph Giuliani, David Dinkins and Edward I. Koch.

...Sarita Kedia, an attorney for Hughes, said that Stephens' plea played no role in Hughes' decision to plead guilty. Asked if Hughes would cooperate with investigators, she said he would not. "He feels that the authorities will do what they have to do," she said. "He's done his duty by coming in here and accepting responsibility for his actions."

Gotti Mansion for Sale? – Six-bedroom Home May Have to Go to Pay Fine
July 22, 1999
Errol A. Cockfield Jr. (NY Newsday)

John Gotti Jr., son of imprisoned mob boss John Gotti, may soon put a "For Sale" sign up at his waterfront home in Mill Neck, his attorney said yesterday.

"He's considering this as a possible solution to the money he owes the government," Manhattan lawyer Sarita Kedia said. "It's a very big cost."

Kedia said Gotti is looking for another home in the metropolitan area. If he finds something suitable, he plans to sell his six-bedroom colonial-style mansion. Kedia said Gotti began looking at homes last weekend. She wouldn't say where.

As part of a deal with federal authorities, Gotti pleaded guilty to racketeering, bribery and extortion charges earlier this year, and agreed to a $1-million fine.

On Request, `Junior' Heads to Jail
Apr 3, 1999
The Associated Press

Just five days before jury selection in his federal racketeering trial was to begin, John A. Gotti, who fought to obtain release on bail, has asked a judge to put him back in jail.

...When Gotti's lawyers sought to lower his bail conditions in December, defense attorney Sarita Kedia said of her client, "He's broke." But Thursday Shargel would not say whether the move was made for financial reasons.

Court Delays In Gotti Case – Lawyers Work on Plea Bargain
December 22, 1998
The Associated Press

Negotiations toward a plea bargain forced the postponement of a court session yesterday in the case against John A. Gotti, who is six weeks away from a trial on racketeering charges.

...And after the second postponement, defense lawyer Sarita Kedia said, "There aren't going to be any pleas today and there aren't going to be any pleas tomorrow."

Junior Out of Jail on Watchful Release
October 2, 1998
The Associated Press

White Plains - Junior Gotti walked out the front door of the Westchester County Courthouse and headed home Thursday, free on bail for the first time since his arrest eight months ago.

John A. Gotti, smiling, said it felt "great" to be out of jail. Asked what he was looking forward to most, he said, "My children."

Gotti's lawyers escorted him through a mob of reporters to a white Mercedes driven by his sister, Victoria, a novelist who offered $2 million in property to help back his $10 million bail package.

...Sarita Kedia, another Gotti attorney, said, "His wife is cooking. His kids are blowing up balloons...Daddy's coming home."

Young Gotti, 34, headed home to a wife and four children at his six-bedroom colonial in Oyster Bay, where his phone calls – except to lawyers – will be taped, where a guard will be posted 24 hours a day and where federal agents can show up any time for a search. Gotti, who cannot leave his home without permission except for medical emergencies, has to wear an electronic device on his ankle so his movements can be tracked.

Junior Gets Bail – Judge Accepts $10M Offer for Freedom
September 17, 1998
Patricia Hurtado (NY Newsday)

John A. Gotti, the son of the imprisoned Mafia boss, can get out of jail and go home to Long Island while he awaits his trial, a Manhattan federal judge ruled yesterday.

...Reached for comment yesterday, one of Gotti's lawyers, Sarita Kedia, said, "We are obviously thrilled with the judge's decision and believe that justice has been served. It took a strong judge to look past all of the overzealous prosecution's unsupported allegations."

...Parker ordered that a federal magistrate review the bail conditions today at a hearing in White Plains, "to review the security offered and to set conditions appropriate to secure the safety of the community."

Kedia said that in July, defense lawyers had offered a $10 million bail package. She said Gotti would agree to house arrest at his Mill Neck home, electronic surveillance and other restrictions.

In an effort to free her brother on bail, Gotti's sister, Victoria, a writer, had offered to put up her $4 million Old Westbury mansion.

"We expect he could get out as early as next week," Kedia said. She declined to name any of those who are willing to put up bail, aside from Gotti's sister.

New York Newsday 1998–2003. All rights reserved.

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