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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Southern District of New York

Thursday, October 27, 2016

Brooklyn Man Pleads Guilty To Extorting Payment From Victim To Stop Murder Plot

Preet Bharara, the United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York announced that BORIS KOTLYARSKY pled guilty to extortion conspiracy and extortion in connection with a scheme to extract payment from a person who believed that he was the subject of a murder-for-hire plot.  KOTLYARSKY pled guilty this morning in Manhattan federal court before U.S. Magistrate Judge Kevin Nathaniel Fox. 

Manhattan U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara said:  “As Boris Kotlyarsky has admitted, he took cruel advantage of a desperate situation, giving a victim the extortionate choice between paying off his hitman or death.  Kotlyarsky’s manipulation did not result in a payoff, but instead a criminal conviction.”

According to the allegations in the charging documents, including the Complaint and Indictment, and statements made in court proceedings:

In October 2015, KOTLYARSKY’s associate (“CC-1”), who has extensive connections to Russian organized crime, told KOTLYARSKY that a Russian businessman (the “Businessman”) had approached CC-1 with a contract to kill the Businessman’s son-in-law (the “Victim”) in exchange for payment.  

CC-1 did not know the identity of the Victim.  KOTLYARSKY, however, informed CC-1 of the identity of the Victim, told CC-1 that the Victim was wealthy, and offered to broker a meeting between the Victim and CC-1 so that the Victim could negotiate a payment to CC-1 to avoid harm.

Between October 2015 through January 14, 2016, KOTLYARSKY repeatedly contacted the Victim and emphasized CC-1’s reputation for violence and connections with organized crime.  In January 2016, KOTLYARSKY arranged a series of meetings between the Victim and CC-1.  During these meetings, CC-1 told the Victim, among other things, that it was fortunate that KOTLYARSKY had contacted CC-1, and that the Victim owed $125,000 to CC-1, with $50,000 due by January 15, 2016.

During a meeting on January 14, 2016, arranged by KOTLYARSKY, the Victim gave CC-1 a check for $50,000.  Shortly after the meeting KOTLYARSKY and CC-1 were arrested.

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KOTLYARSKY, 68, pled guilty to one count of conspiracy to commit Hobbs Act extortion, which carries a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison and a maximum fine of $250,000 or twice the gross gain or loss from the offense; and to one count of Hobbs Act extortion, which carries a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison and a maximum fine of $250,000 or twice the gross gain or loss from the offense.

The maximum potential sentences in this case are prescribed by Congress and are provided here for informational purposes only, as any sentences for the defendants will be determined by the judge.

Mr. Bharara praised the outstanding work of the FBI, U.S. Customs and Border Protection, and the NYPD for their investigative efforts and ongoing support and assistance with the case.

 The prosecution of this case is being overseen by the Office’s Violent and Organized Crime Unit.  Assistant U.S. Attorney Andrew Thomas is in charge of the case.

Violent Crime
Press Release Number: 
Updated October 27, 2016