Three Bergen County residents have been charged with stealing $350,000 from people who believed they were investing in medical ventures — but whose money allegedly went into the defendants’ pockets.
In the second scheme, Perricelli and Denti allegedly convinced a married couple to invest $100,000 in a blood-testing laboratory by falsely claiming to be joint owners of the lab. The couple’s money allegedly was funneled to Denti, Perricelli and Francavilla.
“Behind the slick sales pitch, there was never any real investment, and we charge that the defendants quickly diverted the investor funds for their personal use,” Lougy said in a statement
The investigation was an offshoot of an earlier case involving George Bussanich Sr., 58, of Park Ridge, and his son, George Bussanich Jr., who were accused of defrauding 15 investors out of about $3 million through the sale of fake investments in medical offices. That case is pending. Francavilla was charged in the Bussanich matter as well.
“Beginning with a lead from our prior case against Francavilla, we followed the trail of stolen money and broken promises that these defendants allegedly left in their wake,” said Elie Honig, director of the division of criminal justice, said in a statement.
Jeffrey Simms of Passaic, the lawyer for Francavilla, said she was innocent of “each and every allegation” in both the current case and the Bussanich case.
“I am absolutely convinced that in the end, my client is going to be vindicated,” Simms said. “I honestly believe she was an innocent pawn.”
Denti’s lawyer, Maurice Sercarz of New York City, declined to comment, and Perricelli’s lawyer did not immediately respond to a message seeking comment.
The alleged offenses are second-degree crimes, which carry a sentence of five to 10 years in state prison and a criminal fine of up to $150,000. The second-degree money laundering charge carries a maximum fine of $500,000 and an anti-money laundering profiteering penalty of up to $250,000.
Denti was in the Bergen County Jail Wednesday on $100,000 bail. Giardina was in the Westchester County Jail pending extradition to New Jersey. Francavilla and Perricelli were charged by summons.