Beechhurst man sought hit on spouse from jail: Brown

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A Beechhurst man in jail on charges of nearly beating his wife to death with a hammer tried to hire a hit man to finish the job, authorities said this week.

George Gouvatsos, 50, put out the word from his cell at Rikers Island that he wanted his wife, her 44-year-old sister and his wife's 42-year-old male friend rubbed out, according to Queens District Attorney Richard Brown.

An undercover cop posing as a hit man contacted Gouvatsos and spoke with him several times on the phone in December and January, the district attorney said.

"Just make them disappear," Gouvatsos told the masquerading hit man, according to authorities. "Make them suffer. Make it clean so nobody knows where she is."

Gouvatsos, who faced 12 1/2 to 25 years in prison on the attempted murder charge, was originally charged with conspiracy and criminal solicitation and now could be sentenced to 25 years in prison if convicted.

Gouvatsos, a house painter, lived on 157th Street. He had married his wife, Familia Tedginis, in the late 1980s in the Dominican Republic, and they have a 12-year-old son, sources said.

On Sept. 30, Gouvatsos attacked Tedginis, a 46-year-old hospital nurse, with a hammer in their Beechhurst home, the district attorney said. He left her with a severe skull injury, a broken finger and other injuries, and he was arrested on charges of attempted murder, the district attorney said. Her skull was split and she required 500 stitches, prosecutors said.

Gouvatsos had also assaulted his wife in their home on Sept. 10, kicking her in the legs, striking her in the head and legs and threatening to kill her, the district attorney said.

While in Rikers, Gouvatsos told the undercover detective he would pay him $5,000 to kill his wife, her sister and the friend: $2,500 in advance and the remainder after the job, the district attorney said.

Gouvatsos provided the detective with his wife's photograph, a physical description, her daily schedule, her Social Security number and a map of their residence, the district attorney said.

"The defendant appears to be obsessed with causing harm to his wife and poses a certain threat to her safety and well-being," Brown said.

The couple's marriage became troubled when Tedginis found out he was seeing another woman, according to law enforcement sources. Gouvatsos hit Tedginis, and she kicked him out of the house, the source said.

"He tried to persuade her to take him back," the source said. "When she refused, he became enraged."

But Paul Brenner, Gouvatsos' attorney, said it was Tedginis who cheated on her husband.

"He was a man who was heartbroken, heartbroken by the fact that his wife had an affair and he was languishing in jail with no bail," Brenner said.

Brenner said he had not yet heard the details of the additional charges, but believed them to be false.

"There are two sides to the story," he said.

Gouvatsos was scheduled to be arraigned on the additional charges on Monday.

Reach reporter Alexander Dworkowitz by e-mail at or call 718-229-0300 Ext. 141.

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