Three New York Men Charged with Conspiring to Kidnap New Jersey Man
NEWARK, N.J. – Three New York men were charged today with conspiring to kidnap and hold for ransom a Fort Lee resident, U.S. Attorney Philip R. Sellinger announced.
Fa Deng, 42, of Staten Island, New York, and Albert Ferrelli, 50, and Chiahao Lee, 30, both of Queens, New York, are charged by complaint with conspiring to commit kidnapping. The three defendants appeared today before U.S. Magistrate Judge Cathy L. Waldor in Newark federal court and were detained.
According to documents filed in this case and statements made in court:
On April 5, 2022, Deng, Ferrelli, Lee, and another conspirator drove to the victim’s home in Fort Lee. Ferrelli and the other conspirator entered the victim’s home wearing masks. They bound the victim’s hands, placed duct tape over his eyes and mouth, and forced him into a vehicle.
Law enforcement received information that kidnappers had sent the victim’s wife a photograph of the victim bound and duct-taped, demanding a ransom of approximately $680,000. When law enforcement responded to the victim’s home, they located what appeared to be duct tape with pieces of latex gloves stuck to it. After reviewing local surveillance footage, law enforcement identified a gray minivan used in the abduction. Other surveillance footage showed the minivan crossing the George Washington Bridge shortly after the kidnapping, and subsequently crossing into the Bronx and then into Queens.
The following day, New York Police Department personnel responded to Prince Street in Queens, where they encountered Ferrelli guarding the door to the building. When officers approached Ferrelli, they heard a man screaming for help inside the building. Officers entered the building and found the victim with his hands bound, and duct tape over his eyes and mouth. Surveillance footage obtained by law enforcement showed that during this captivity, the victim attempted to escape by running out of the building where he was eventually found. The video showed Ferrelli tackle the victim to prevent him from escaping, engage in a physical scuffle, and pull him back into the building.
Law enforcement located the gray minivan used in the kidnapping parked in the driveway of Lee’s home in Queens. Records showed that the minivan had been rented by Lee’s wife at LaGuardia Airport on April 4, 2022.
The maximum penalty for the offense is life imprisonment.
U.S. Attorney Sellinger credited special agents of the FBI, under the direction of George M. Crouch Jr.; the Bergen County Prosecutor’s Office under the direction of Prosecutor Mark Musella; officers of the Fort Lee Police Department, under the direction of Chief Matthew J. Hintze; and the New York Police Department under the direction of Commissioner Keechant L. Sewell with the investigation leading to the charges.
The government is represented by Assistant U.S. Attorney Carolyn Silane of the Economic Crimes Unit in Newark.
The charges and allegations contained in the complaint are merely accusations, and the defendants are presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.