Friday, 11 June 2010 00:00
On Friday, May 28, the Village of Westbury Building Department, accompanied by the Nassau County Police Department, executed a search warrant with respect to alleged multiple code violations in a central Westbury area home.
The home had been the target of previous village enforcement action. One man believed to be the owner of the property, according to police, was the subject of an open arrest warrant associated with past village housing violations; he was arrested and issued an appearance ticket.
The execution of the search warrant and arrest were the culmination of an intensive and extensive investigation of the property by the building department, and resulted in the issuance of summonses with respect to 31 violations, including illegal occupancies in the basement and garage of the home. Three persons were charged with violations. If convicted on all counts, those cited with violations could each be subject to maximum punishment of up to $19,000 in fines and five months in jail.
According to Bill Mello, the village’s senior building inspector who participated in the raid, the warrant was issued by Westbury Village Justice Thomas Liotti upon a demonstration that the property was likely being used in violation of village zoning laws, along with the prior history of code violations by the property owner at the location.
Mayor Peter Cavallaro stated that, “The village is committed to bringing the most flagrant code violators to justice. Not only do they endanger the residents who are occupying these illegal apartments, often in unsafe and unhealthy conditions, but motivated by profit, they damage our neighborhoods and quality of life. We have instructed the building department to be as aggressive as possible in attacking the most serious and dangerous housing violations, including by the use of search warrants where necessary.”
Cavallaro added, “We want to send a clear message to all those who seek to profit by violating our code and by putting people at risk, that this kind of illegal activity will not be tolerated in Westbury.”
Mello indicated that any resident who has a concern, or wants to report suspicious or illegal activity can do so anonymously if they prefer, by calling the building department at 334-1700, ext. 2, or the village’s new Code Enforcement Hotline at 333-1869.