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Corona man not guilty in Monserrate death threat

After a three-day trial at Queens Criminal Court, Judge Fernando Camacho found Julio Abreu, 55, not guilty of allegations that on at least four separate occasions he threatened to kill Monserrate, aides Juan Gomez and Luis Lugo and the president of the Corona-based Partido Revolucion Dominicano, Bolivar Vera.Abreu was at the time a member of Monserrate's challenger Luis Jimenez's campaign for the upcoming Democratic primary.Monserrate, who testified against Abreu in the trial, was reportedly disappointed but accepting of the verdict. The alleged threats came at a time when another councilman, James Davis (D-Brooklyn), was gunned down July 23, 2003 in the Council chambers in City Hall by Othniel Askew, a political rival in the September Democratic primary.According to the criminal complaint, Abreu in a phone call on June 25, 2003 accused Gomez i of tearing down fliers he had put up in support of Jimenez and threatened to shoot both the aide and Monserrate.About two weeks later Abreu supposedly called Lugo, another aide, claiming he was a federal agent with a loaded gun that he was not afraid to use against Monserrate supporters, the complaint said.That same day Abreu again threatened violence when he met Lugo at a grocery store on Junction Boulevard, saying he was armed and crazy, according to the complaint.Then on July 24, he threatened to decapitate Bolivar Vera, claiming the political group chief had turned the Police Department against him, the complaint said.Abreu was arrested the next day.Despite the accusations, Camacho said he could find no sign of a threat in a the call Abreu made to Lugo, which the aide had recorded and the prosecution submitted as evidence. Reach reporter Zach Patberg by e-mail at news@timesledger.com or by phone at 718-229-0300, Ext. 155.

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