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Blue collar guys with white collar crimes December 10, 2008

Posted by tsclaw2209 in News.

This should be a fun case to watch.  The State will likely get all the little guys to flip as the owner is the top dog.  The owner’s attorney is better off working to end this  case quick.  His card to play is to rat on himself so to speak and fess up to other crimes they don’t know about yet.  That will save them a lot of time.  I don’t see this  one going to trial.

HighPoint owner Steven Avella, 53, was arrested on the charges of arson for hire, conspiracy to commit theft and two counts of insurance fraud, police said. Police said he paid his workers up to $600 to take the two trucks.

Driver Vincent Garrison, 28, of Union City, was charged with arson for hire, theft, conspiracy to commit theft and possession of burglary tools, police said. Driver Brian Sheppard, 29, of Secaucus, was charged with aggravated assault by auto and witness tampering, police said.

Driver Rafael Morales, 40, of Union City, was charged with theft, possession of burglary tools and conspiracy to commit theft, police said. Former driver Christopher Baulch, 30, of Lyndhurst, was charged with theft and conspiracy to commit theft, police said.

“Without giving away too much about our investigation, there is a lot of illegal activity we are looking at,” said Lt. Frank Cannella, adding that there was no evidence the owners of the vehicles had any involvement.

Police say the drivers were paid by Avella, 53, of Union City, to steal two trucks that the drivers then attempted to launch from a cliff behind a Paterson Plank Road car wash, police said. The trucks got caught up on trees at the top of the cliff to Tonnelle Avenue.



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