Volume 79, Number 10 | August 12 - 18, 2009
West and East Village, Chelsea, Soho, Noho, Little Italy, Chinatown and Lower East Side, Since 1933

Police Blotter

Chelsea bank bandit

Detectives from the Manhattan Major Case Squad arrested Frank Bonacorso, 48, a Chelsea resident, on Wed., Aug. 5, and charged him with robbing five banks and attempting to rob two others in the Village, Soho and Lower Manhattan, as well as on the Upper West Side and the Upper East Side, between June 17 and July 22.

The suspect was charged with passing notes to tellers in the seven banks beginning on June 17 at 12:50 p.m. at the HSBC branch at 1165 Third Ave. at 68th St., where he made off with $500, according to the complaint filed by the Manhattan district attorney. On June 23 at 10:17 a.m. he made off with $1,410 from the TD branch at 535 Columbus Ave. at W. 86th St. On June 29 he hit the HSBC branch at 45 E. 89th St at 11 a.m. and stole $977. On July 6 he stole $1,500 from the Country Bank branch at 902 Second Ave. at 48th St.

He struck the Valley National branch on 434 Broadway near Howard St. at 2:10 p.m. on July 21, but fled when the teller refused to hand over any money. Twenty minutes later he passed a note to a teller at the Emigrant Savings branch at 110 Church St. near Park Place, and again fled when the teller refused to give him money. He walked into the HSBC branch at 354 Sixth Ave., near Waverly Place, at 12:15 p.m. on July 22 and made off with $3,060. Bonacorso, who gave his address as 226 W. 20th St., was being held in lieu of bail pending a court date later this week.

Hot Jeep

Police stopped a black Jeep at the northeast corner of Clarkson and Washington Sts. at 11:40 a.m. Fri., July 31, because the driver was not wearing a seatbelt. The driver, Charles Rhodie, 46, had no documentation for the vehicle and police discoved it had been stolen. Rhodie was charged with possession of stolen property.

Burglary on Prince

A burglar broke into a Michael Kors boutique at 101 Prince St. at Mercer St. around 5:30 a.m. Fri., Aug. 7, and made off with bags and sunglasses valued at $13,000, police said. A security guard at the Apple Store next door was called away for a moment to admit an employee through a side door and returned to find the glass door of the boutique broken and a blue sedan being driven away, according to reports.

Bottle beaning

Police arrested Ramiro Salazar, 30, and charged him with throwing a beer bottle and hitting a man in the head at 12:45 a.m. Sun., Aug. 9, in front of 8 Christopher St. near Gay St. The victim, 31, of Jersey City, was treated at St. Vincent’s Hospital, and Salazar, of 400 W. 43rd St., was charged with second-degree assault.

Vulgar vendor

A food vendor on E. 11th St. at First Ave. was arrested Thurs., Aug. 6, for groping a woman customer waiting for her order around 4 a.m. Thurs., Aug. 6, according to charges filed by the Manhattan District Attorney’s Office. The vendor, Benbahi Salah, 29, of Brooklyn, was charged with sexual abuse and was free on parole pending an Oct. 2 court appearance.

’Net nightmare

A Bronx resident, 41, told police he was drugged and sodomized last week by an East Village man he met via the Internet. The victim said that while visiting the suspect’s apartment on E. 13th St. near First Ave. during the early hours of Fri., Aug. 7, he drank a glass of juice than made him pass out, according to a New York Post article. He was naked and bleeding from the rectum when he awoke, according to the report.

You really screwed up

Authorities on Aug. 6 arrested Kevin You and Xiao Ling Chen, who had offices first at 9 East Broadway and currently at 15 Division St., for illegally practicing law and operating a fraudulent immigration consultation service.

They were indicted for grand larceny, fraud, practicing as an attorney without being admitted and violating the city’s Immigration Assistance Services Law. The indictment is the first time the city immigration law has been criminally enforced, according to a spokesperson for District Attorney Robert Morgenthau.

The indictment says that Chen, known as Linda Chen, was the president of Da Bure Immigration Consultation, where You purported to be a lawyer and represented that he had special connections in the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services agency and the U.S. Embassy in China.

The defendants took $4,840 from one client, promising that relatives in China would get immigration approval within six months and that relatives in the U.S. would receive green cards. The promises were false and the victim went to a Chinatown civic group, which contacted the District Attorney’s Office.

Albert Amateau

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