Nature’s Grill co-owner federally indicted for alleged involvement in drug ring

The co-owner of Nature’s Grill, (its Bay Ridge location pictured above), was federally indicted for his alleged involvement in a drug ring.
Photo by Meaghan McGoldrick

The co-owner of a popular Brooklyn-based health food chain had been secretly slinging drugs for four years, prosecutors allege.

Police arrested Anastasios Verteouris — who co-owned and managed Nature’s Grill, with locations in Bay Ridge, Carroll Gardens, and Staten Island — on Jan. 26, and hit the grocery mogul with charges of conspiracy to distribute controlled substances between the years of 2014 and 2018, Brooklyn Paper has learned.

Federal prosecutors demand that Verteouris, also known as Tasos, forfeit all proceeds derived from purportedly selling oxycodone, oxymorphone, morphine sulfate and amphetamines, court documents say, and he’ll require the release of other property to reach the set value. 

Verteouris’ family founded Nature’s Grill in 2001 with a mission “to introduce heart-healthy gourmet options” and “to promote a healthy lifestyle of body and mind,” according to Verteouris’ Linkedin page. 

The defendant is being represented by Arthur Aidala of Manhattan-based law firm Aidala, Bertuna and Kamins, who did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Verteouris posted a $100,000 prison release bond using his Staten Island home as collateral, according to court documents.

He was set to appear before the court in a telephone conference on March 23, but that hearing has since been rescheduled for May 26.

Additional reporting by Rose Adams