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A Whitestone man has been charged with kidnapping a Houston businessmen after the Texan flew into the city on his private jet, Suffolk County authorities said.
Joseph Corvea, 32, of 149-40 6th Ave. in Whitestone, was arrested Friday on charges of kidnapping Edgar Bias, a 44-year-old businessman from Houston, Suffolk County police said.
Corvea was arraigned the following day in Suffolk County District Court in Central Islip in front of Judge John Kelly, Suffolk County District Attorney Thomas Spota said. He has been charged with second-degree kidnapping and faces a sentence of 12 1/2 to 25 years in prison, the district attorney said.
Louis Green, 51, of 231 Beach 131st St., Belle Harbor, and Anthony Pansini, 51, of Holmdel, N.J. were also arrested on the same charges, police said.
On March 21, Bias, who landed in New York on a private jet for a business meeting, received a phone call from business associates directing him to meet them at the South Shore Steak House in Patchogue, L.I., police said.
At the restaurant, Bias was confronted at gunpoint by three men who police contend were Corvea, Green and Pansini.
The three men then took him to the basement of 18 Windsor Lane in Holbrook, L.I., police said. The kidnappers stripped Bias of his valuables, which included a Rolex watch, a gold bracelet and $3,000 in cash, police said.
Bias was then taken to a hotel room in Howard Beach, where he secretly made a call on a cellphone to a friend, telling him approximately where he was being held, police said.
Detectives from the 106th Precinct in Ozone Park along with the Suffolk County Police Kidnap Team traced the call, stormed the hotel room and found Bias with Corvea, police said. Corvea was arrested, and Green and Pansini were apprehended later in the day after further investigation, police said.
Corveas attorney, Kevin Fitzgerald, said his client, a married man with an 8-year-old daughter, lost $35,000 in life savings to Bias in an investment made three years ago, Newsday reported.
Corvea was released on $200,000 in bail, the district attorney said. Green and Pansini were also released on bail, the district attorney said.
Assistant District Attorney Dana Brown is in charge of prosecuting the case.
Reach reporter Alexander Dworkowitz by e-mail at Timesledger@aol.com or call 229-0300 Ext. 141.
©2002 Community Newspaper Group
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