Volume 18 • Issue 20 | October 07 - 13, 2005

Police blotter

Push-in robber
A resident of 37 King St. was unlocking the vestibule door to her apartment at 9:30 p.m. Fri. Sept. 30 when a robber pushed her inside the door, followed and said, “Give me your money,” police reported. The thief, described only as a black man, took the victim’s wallet and fled. He used a credit card from the wallet to buy a MetroCard, police said.

Bat wielder
A man told First Precinct police that a stranger with whom he had an argument at about 4 a.m. Sat. Oct. 1 at the corner of Greenwich and Albany Sts. hit him on the head with a baseball bat and fled.

Subway grab
A woman on a Downtown express No. 4 train had her cell phone snatched from her hand at 11:30 p.m. Sat. Oct. 1 by a thief on the Wall St. station platform who reached in and grabbed it as the doors were closing, police said.

Money transfer plea
Thinh Q. Tran, 59, who owned and operated four unlicensed money transfer businesses in the Village and in Chinatown, pleaded guilty on Oct. 3 to banking law violations and attempted enterprise corruption, according to the office of District Attorney Robert Morgenthau.

The defendant used the transfer companies, Vina U.S.A., Inc and Vina Express Corp., both of 80 Fifth Ave., and Saigon Center, Inc. and Saigon Express Corp., both of 150 Lafayette St., to move almost $100 million to Vietnam for customers without requiring their identification or scrutinizing the transactions for suspicious activity over the past five years, according to the charges.

The investigation leading to his indictment and subsequent guilty plea revealed that Tran used agents in Hawaii, Canada and Atlanta, to collect money that the agents forwarded to Tran’s New York businesses for transfer to Vietnam, the District Attorney’s office said.

Unlicensed money transfers allow the proceeds of criminal activity including narcotics and terrorist financing to be concealed, Morgenthau said in a prepared statement. The New York State Banking Department took part in the investigation.

Tran faces up to 15 years in prison. A sentencing date will be set in January.

Wallet gone
A woman who had left her handbag on the back of her chair at a restaurant at 55 Broad St. at lunch time on Fri. Sept. 30 discovered her wallet, with $10 cash, credit cards and various ID, was missing from the bag when she left work that evening, police said.

—Albert Amateau


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