Volume 73, Number 40 | February 04 - 10, 2004

CITY/CRIME



Police Blotter

Priest stops thief
An intruder in the Franciscan Priory of St. Anthony of Padua at 151 Thompson St. on Thurs. Jan. 29 fled without taking anything after a 73-year-old priest grappled with him.

The Rev. Louis Troiano was distributing mail just before 1 p.m. when he saw the stranger coming out of a second-floor bedroom. “I tried to get my hands on him,” Troiano told the Daily News. “Sometimes you forget you’re 73.” The intruder fled after knocking the priest to the floor.

The Rev. Emmanuel Farrone, 90, recalled that he was watching a noon televised Mass in his room on the fourth floor when the intruder opened his door. “He ran when he saw me and that’s when he went downstairs where Father Louis was,” said Farrone. “It’s a lucky thing he ran away. I used to be a boxer — Golden Gloves — If I’d have caught him it would’ve been ‘boom boom boom.’ ”

It was not known how the intruder entered the building.


Cop dies in peddler chase
Sgt. Keith Ferguson, 38, a police force veteran of 17 years, collapsed and died in Soho on Sat. Jan. 31 after chasing an unlicensed peddler of counterfeit goods, police said.

Ferguson, a member of an Emergency Service Unit that makes citywide antiterrorism patrols in an armored truck, joined the foot chase that started when police spotted the suspect selling counterfeit merchandize on Lafayette and Grand Sts. After the suspect was apprehended at Grand St. and Broadway, Ferguson fell to the pavement unconscious. Fellow officers tried in vain to revive him and then took him to St. Vincent’s Hospital where he was declared dead at 2:40 p.m.

Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly said the cause of death was not known, but added that Ferguson, whose father is a retired police officer, had not been out ill in more than 10 years. Ferguson was said to be in good health and an accomplished swimmer and diver.

The vendor, Demba-Yero Sall, 43, of 1478 Bedford Ave., Brooklyn, was charged with resisting arrest, unlicensed vending and trademark counterfeiting.


9/11 bilker sentenced
U.S. District Judge Richard Conway Casey sentenced Allen Klein, 30, on Jan. 22 to six months in prison following his September plea of guilty to defrauding the Lower Manhattan Development Corp. Residential Grant Program.

Klein had applied to the L.M.D.C. for a two-year federal grant for Lower Manhattan residents, stating he lived and intended to remain at 71 Broadway. The L.M.D.C. approved Klein’s application, making him eligible to receive a total of $12,000. But within a few months, Klein moved to Florida and falsely maintained that he lived in Lower Manhattan, according to the charges.

The L.M.D.C. began investigating Klein when his grant checks were returned because his mail was being forwarded to Florida. Klein claimed to be caring for his mother and an ailing aunt, but after an investigation, he was arrested in July.

Judge Casey also directed the Bureau of Immigration and Customs Enforcement to begin deportation proceedings against Klein, who is a British citizen.


Guilty plea in 9/11 fraud
Beatrice Kaufman, 69, pleaded guilty to third-degree grand larceny and fraud on Wed. Jan. 28 in connection with the World Trade Center disaster. The plea, entered the day her trial was to begin, was part of a deal that gets Kaufman a sentence of 52 weekends in jail in addition to paying restitution and fines totaling about $255,000. She remains free on $15,000 bail until her sentencing March 25.

Kaufman admitted she got more than $58,700 from Chubb Insurance Co., and more than $8,000 each from the Federal Emergency Management Agency and the American Red Cross and nearly $10,000 from Safe Horizons by falsely claiming the terror attack forced her out of her $5 million Downtown residence and office where she ran an employment agency.

Kaufman admitted that on the morning of the attack she was in her summer home on Long Island and that she had no intention of returning soon to her Downtown office and home, which was being renovated.

The plea requires Kaufman to make restitution to Chubb, FEMA and the charities and to pay fines of $162,520.


Village DOA
Police responding to a call for help at 634 Hudson St. near Horatio St. found the body of Elisa Fukasawa, 32, dead on the floor of her apartment, apparently of natural causes. The Medical Examiner is investigating the cause of death.


Bank jobs
A man walked into the Fourth Federal Savings Bank branch at 242 W. 23rd St. at 2:27 p.m. Tues. Jan. 27 and passed a note to a teller demanding money, police said. The suspect, described as a black man in his 40s, fled with an undisclosed amount of cash.

A man who walked into the HSBC branch at 101 W. 14th St. at 3:30 p.m. Thurs. Jan. 29 passed a teller a note and fled with an undetermined amount of cash.


Dance center rip-off
A man walked into the Dance Space Center in Soho at 451 Broadway at 8:30 p.m. Sat. Jan. 31, picked up a patron’s bag off a hook and fled, police said.


Bag snatch
Two thieves came up behind a woman walking on Greene St. near Canal St. at about 10:35 p.m. Sat. Jan. 31, and one of them snatched her handbag, passed it off to the other and both fled, police said. The bag had $40 in cash, a cell phone, credit cards and personal items.


Car trunk rifled
A woman who parked her 2002 Ford Taurus at 119 Mercer St. between Spring and Prince Sts. on Saturday night Jan. 31 returned at 11:30 p.m. and found her laptop computer, cell phone and clothing missing from the truck, police said.

Albert Amateau


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