05/14/13 5:30pm
05/14/2013 5:30 PM

CARRIE MILLER FILE PHOTO | A man who tried cashing in a $74,000 lotto ticket at this Valero in Riverside was nearly scammed out his winnings last month.

Two of three local gas station workers accused of trying to scam a construction worker out of $74,000 in Take 5 lottery winnings in April answered to a slew of criminal charges Tuesday in First District Court in Central Islip, authorities said.

Yunis Ozturk

Yunis Ozturk

Southampton Town police initially charged Yalcin Nergiz, 41, Yunis Ozturk, 33, and Orhan Ozturk, 47, with felony grand larceny and conspiracy charges. They were since indicted by a Suffolk County grand jury.

The indictment, which was unsealed in court Tuesday, also levels criminal possession of stolen property charges against all three men. Orhan Ozturk, who’s accused of cashing in the winning ticket with the state, is facing two additional charges of offering a false instrument for filing.

Orhan Ozturk received $48,318, after taxes, after redeeming the winning ticket with the state “on or about” March 19, the indictment reads.

Mr. Nergiz’s arraignment was adjourned to May 21 so that his attorney could appear, prosecutors said.

None of the money has been recovered, authorities said.

Yalcin Nergiz

Yalcin Nergiz

All three men are facing two counts of second-degree grand larceny, the top charge in the indictment punishable by five to 15 years in prison.

Both Yunis Ozturk, who was ordered to be held on $50,000 bail, and Orhan Ozturk, who was ordered to be held on $10,000 bail, pleaded not-guilty to the charges before Acting State Supreme Court Justice Fernando Camacho in Central Islip, prosecutors said.

“Nergiz and Yunis Ozturk, working at the Valero Gas Station on Peconic Avenue in Riverside deceived the winner by paying him $774 of the $74,892 payoff when he redeemed the ticket on March 18,” Suffolk County District Attorney Thomas Spota said in a statement before the proceedings.

Orhan Ozturk

Orhan Ozturk

The arrests were made April 19.

Orhan Ozturk, who is Yunis Ozturk’s brother, was working at an Empire gas station on Route 58 at the time. He was recruited by the other two suspects to cash in the winning ticket because of identification he has, law-enforcement sources said.

The trio was supposed to be arraigned in Central Islip on May 8, but those proceedings were delayed due to the need for a Turkish interpreter, prosecutors said.

Lawyers for the men could not be reached for comment.

According to police and the grand jury indictment, a 28-year-old construction worker, whom prosecutors identified as Guatamala native Marvin Choy Nij, brought in several lottery tickets March 18, including a winning Take 5 lotto ticket. The two store clerks cashed in the scratch-offs for a few dollars, and then saw the Take 5 ticket was a winner worth $74,892.

Instead of alerting the man to his winnings, the clerks gave him $774, congratulated him and sent him on his way without offering a receipt that the victim requested, police have said.

The victim, who does not speak or write English, later realized something was amiss after learning that a store is not authorized to hand out winnings above $600, authorities said. He also noticed Riverhead Stationary on East Main Street, where Mr. Nij purchased the winning Take 5 ticket, boasting of a $74,000 winner.

The victim unsuccessfully confronted the clerks at the store and then Southampton Town Police investigated in conjunction with the New York State Lotto Commission, the owner of the gas station and the Suffolk County District Attorney Economic Crimes Bureau, authorities have said.

Mr. Nergiz is being held in a Suffolk County jail without bail until he can appear in court.

Orhan Ozturk had posted bail and was freed later Tuesday.

mwhite@timesreview.com

09/21/12 12:00pm
09/21/2012 12:00 PM

DA COURTESY PHOTO | DAVID BOUTIN

Accused of engaging in sex acts with a 13-year-old boy, David Boutin of West Hempstead arrived at county court Friday dressed in a gray suit, with his mother by his side, but he left in handcuffs after Judge Barbara Kahn rejected his request for lower bail.

He did not speak in court.

Mr. Boutin, 42, is alleged to have abused the teen on two occasions in his car in the Shoreham/Wading River area earlier this year. He was arrested on Aug. 17 and pleaded not guilty to the charges Friday and was ordered jailed in lieu of $25,000 cash bail or $100,000 bond.

Mr. Boutin is a financial planner who lost his job after his arrest.

His mother declined to comment after the court proceeding.

Assistant District Attorney John Cortes said Mr. Boutin had two sexual encounters with the 13-year-old boy, and that the two met on Craigslist.

Both times, they met  in a secluded location off a LIPA access road north of Route 25A in the Shoreham/Wading River area and engaged in oral sex and another act in the backseat of Mr. Boutin’s car, according to Mr. Cortes.

On April 17, a Suffolk County police officer who was searching for a stolen dirt bike came upon Mr. Boutin and the teen in the back of Mr. Boutin’s blue 2010 Toyota Corolla parked off the road, Mr. Cortes said.

Mr. Boutin was arrested and charged with two counts of second-degree criminal sexual act, which used to be called sodomy.

He also exchanged sexually explicit emails with the victim, Mr. Cortes said. The boy’s identity was concealed because of his age and the nature of the crime.

“Mr. Boutin also signed a written confession admitting that he had engaged in sexual conduct with the victim,” Mr. Cortes said afterward.

The confession was not videotaped or audiotaped, he said.

Mr. Boutin’s only previous arrest was a 1992 driving while ability impaired charge, according to Mr. Cortes.

The case went before a grand jury, which came back with an indictment that elevated the charges to three counts of second-degree criminal sexual act, which is a class D felony punishable by up to seven years in jail, as well as one count of first-degree disseminating indecent material to a minor, also a class D felony, two counts of second-degree sexual abuse, and two counts of endangering the welfare of a child.

“My client denies the allegations,” said Frank Tinari, Mr. Boutin’s attorney. “He’s married, he has a house in West Hempstead and he’s been employed as a financial planner.”

But Mr. Tinari said Mr. Boutin lost his job as a financial planner following his arrest, and has been seeking counseling with his wife.

Mr. Boutin did not testify before the grand jury, his attorney said.

He tried to get Judge Kahn to lower his client’s bond to $10,000, an amount he previously posted.

“The people have a very serious case,” Judge Kahn said in rejecting the request for lower bail.

Mr. Boutin is due back in court on Oct. 17.

tgannon@timesreview.com