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County Court, Nassau County

The Court was presented with two distinct issues which shall be resolved herein. In the first case, the People filed an appeal from an order of the County Court, Nassau County dated July 6, 1992, which granted that branch of the defendant’s omnibus motion which was to dismiss all counts of indictment which pertained to him.

The Court now reversed of the lower court’s Order, granting the criminal defendant’s motion to dismiss. The Court stated that branch of the defendant’s motion which was to dismiss the indictment against him is denied, and the matter is remitted to the County Court, Nassau County, for further proceedings on the indictment.

Contrary to the County Court’s determination, we find that the evidence presented to the Grand Jury was legally sufficient to establish a prima facie case against the defendant. In the context of a Grand Jury proceeding, the sufficiency of the People’s presentation is determined by inquiring into whether the evidence, viewed in the light most favorable to the People, if unexplained and uncontradicted, would warrant conviction by a petit jury.

Viewed in such a light, the evidence presented to the Grand Jury was legally sufficient to sustain the counts of grand larceny and conspiracy to commit grand larceny. The defendant was charged based upon his alleged participation in a scheme to steal insurance company funds by authorizing payment on nonexistent claims. In this regard, we note that although the evidence against the defendant consisted primarily of accomplice testimony, sufficient corroborative evidence was presented which tended to connect the defendant with the crime.

Corroborative evidence need not bolster the details nor rise to the level of conclusive proof, and even evidence of a seemingly insignificant nature may so harmonize with the accomplice’s narrative as to have a tendency to furnish the necessary connection between defendant and the crime. Applying these principles to the case at bar, we find that the independent evidence that the defendant authorized the payment on a nonexistent insurance claim in the absence of the documentation required by company policy sufficiently corroborated the accomplice’s testimony.

We further find that the prosecutor’s instruction on conspiracy in the fourth degree was not so misleading or incomplete that it impaired the integrity of the Grand Jury proceeding. Finally, we note that the grand jurors were not improperly precluded from examining the witnesses who appeared before them.

On the second case, the defendant appealed the judgment of the County Court, Nassau County, rendered March 1, 1977, convicting him of robbery in the first degree, grand larceny in the third degree and burglary in the third degree, upon a jury verdict, and imposing sentence.

The Court now modified the Judgment on the law, by reversing the conviction of grand larceny in the third degree under count two of the indictment, and the sentence imposed thereon, and the said count is dismissed.

Defendant stands convicted of robbery in the first degree, burglary in the third degree, and two counts of grand larceny in the third degree. One of the two grand larceny counts is for stealing property from the person of the complainant. The other grand larceny count is for stealing property having a value in excess of $250.

As defendant was also convicted of robbery in the first degree, under the circumstances of this case the grand larceny count regarding the theft from the person of the complainant was, necessarily, an inclusory concurrent count of the one charging robbery and, therefore, must be reversed and dismissed.

The People candidly concede this point. The Court notes, however, that the remaining convictions which defendant would have this court reverse and dismiss on appeal as inclusory concurrent counts contain separate elements which are not included in the robbery conviction.

To assist you in all type of robbery, grand larceny and other related offenses, seek the assistance of Nassau County Robbery Attorneys of Stephen Bilkis & Associates.

To inquire the status or merits of your case, our Nassau County Criminal Lawyers can give you free legal advice. To contact us, call our toll free number or visit our office near you.

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