Three Queens men were charged with stealing hundreds of thousands of dollars’ worth of property in a Suffolk County warehouse during an “elaborate Ocean’s Eleven-style robbery,” the Queens Prosecutor said. The authorities did not disclose what was taken from the camp.
Christopher Tsang, 44, from College Point; Joe Lin, 40, of Flushing, and Chung Wei Wang, 38, of Oakland Gardens, were indicted Wednesday in the Queens Supreme Court on 10-count charges and second-degree burglary, four first-degree robbery cases, four, charged with cases of second degree robbery and fourth degree conspiracy.
“These defendants are charged with staging an elaborate ‘Ocean’s Eleven’ -style conspiracy to demolish a warehouse and pocket hundreds of thousands of dollars from locations in Queens to plan the logistics of their robbery,” said Queens District Attorney Melinda Katz , in a press release.
“The plot rotates here – the robbery flopped and the defendants face jail time if convicted,” added Katz.
Allegedly wearing masks and counterfeit NYPD-branded tactical gear, the defendants stormed a warehouse in West Babylon with guns on July 18, Katz said. Two warehouse workers were given hoods over their heads and fastened with cable ties. Two other deliverers were also held in place with cable ties. The defendants then allegedly fled the camp with around 100 boxes in unmarked trucks and delivery vans.
Members of the New York City Police Department and the Queens District Attorney’s Office used surveillance, court-approved wiretapping and other investigative tools to uncover the conspiracy involving other unidentified co-conspirators.
New York police on Wednesday issued search warrants in the Queens homes of Tsang, Wang and Ling. Police allegedly confiscated up to $ 50,000 in cash and 100 pounds of marijuana from Lin’s house. When police ransacked Wang’s house, they allegedly found an unloaded .22 firearm, eight tasers, zip ties, police-related items and approximately $ 120,000 in cash. Police also reportedly removed a non-working firearm and about $ 8,500 from Tsang’s home.
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The three defendants are said to have started hatching the plan in early July. They met around midnight on July 2nd at a prestigious gaming room on Cherry Avenue in Flushing. The trio met with several other co-conspirators at College Point in a movie theater parking lot at 11 p.m. on July 7, referring to a scroll, according to Katz.
The next day, Tsang and Lin drove to the West Babylon warehouse on Route 109 from a nearby supermarket. On July 9th, the group gathered in a cinema parking lot in College Point to review photos of the warehouse.
Tsang, Wang, and another unidentified man also met on July 11th on 30th Street in Long Island City, according to the district attorney. They reportedly wore dark clothing, masks and gloves.
Her next trial is scheduled for January 10th.
Lin’s attorney Patrick Brackley said his client was a restaurant owner and father in Flushing.
“There is much more to this case than the prosecution suggests and we will fight it vigorously,” Brackley said. The other two defendants’ lawyers did not respond immediately.