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Nigerian ‘prince’ scams Ridge man

for The Brooklyn Paper
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A Nigerian “prince” in desperate need of an American friend to help him transfer money out of his turbulent country found one in Bay Ridge.

The 27-year-old man, who was promised a slice of the action in return for his kindness, told cops he received the urgent e-mail sometime in June. In the email, the “prince” told the victim that before he could transfer the millions of dollars into the United States, he would first need a little cash.

Cops say that the victim, who lives on 95th Street near Third Avenue, obliged the wealthy Nigerian heir with a wire transfer of $2,850 on June 13, before discovering he was part of a royal scam.

Invite to steal

A 33-year-old man was robbed after inviting a man into his apartment on June 13.

The crime went down at shortly after 7 am, when the victim invited the sticky-fingered perp into the flat, which is on Bay Ridge Avenue near Ridge Boulevard. After the man left, his host discovered that his cellphone, valued at $150, and his iPod, valued at $300, were missing.

Alarm response

A quick response by cops to a residential alarm may have thwarted a heist on June 13.

Police got to the house, which is on Seventh Avenue near 88th Street, after the alarm sounded at 2:50 pm and discovered the security gate pried open and a basement window shattered, but fortunately no property was stolen.

Store looted

Can you rob me now?

A Fourth Avenue cellphone store was robbed of over $50,000 worth of merchandise on June 15.

A store employee told police that she closed the store at 8:30 pm on June 14, only to return the next morning at 11 to discover someone had crawled through the roof, stolen the goods, and escaped through the bathroom window.

The tech-thief made off with a bundle of new cellphones, valued at $41,405, but didn’t forget the accessories, valued at $15,131.

Purse grab

A woman’s purse was snatched as she was shopping on Bay Parkway on July 15.

The 65-year-old woman was near 73rd street at around 5 pm when a thug came from behind her and snatched the pocketbook. The woman found herself being shoved to the ground after she attempted to struggle with the punk.

The thief took more than $100, along with her credit and debit cards, police said.

Cellphone game

A teenager found herself in the midst of a game of monkey in the middle when three punks took her phone in a New Utrecht Avenue train station on July 13.

The 16-year-old girl was waiting for the D train at the station, which is near 79th Street, at around 11:15 am, when the threesome approached her. According to the victim, one of the perps took the cellphone out of her pocket and threw it around in front of her. When she attempted to get it back, one of the punks punched her in the eye, police said.

All three villains fled following the incident. The victim had some swelling and bruising to her face.

AM break-in

A middle-aged man returned to his 80th Street apartment to find thieves had broken in and taken his property overnight on July 13.

The 49-year-old man discovered the crime when he returned to his apartment, which is near 18th Avenue, at around 5 am. The punks had broken in and taken electronics and cellphone before fleeing through a rear bedroom window, cops said.

Gym swipes

After a one-week absence from these pages, two more gym swipes were reported last week — this time at the same 86th Street health club.

The first break-in occurred on July 11 at around 5:30 pm, after a 21-year-old fitness junky left his belongings in a locker. After working up a good sweat, he returned to the lockerroom, where he found that thugs had broken in and taken his jewelry and $100, police said.

The second occurred on July 13, at around 6:30 pm. In this case, the 44-year-old left his locker with all his property inside thinking a combination lock would keep them safe. But a thief or thieves broke in and took his clothes, cellphone, and credit and debit cards, police said.

The gym, which is located near 19th Avenue, has been the site of numerous lockerroom break-ins — many chronicled in these pages — yet a surveillance system has yet to be installed.

Opto-debauchery

An optometrist had his car broken into and robbed of vital equipment after leaving it parked on West 12th Street on July 9.

The victim returned to his car, which was near Avenue P, at around 10 pm to discover that thieves had taken $6,000 worth of optometrical equipment, police said.

He later told police that he may have left the doors open.

Biting buffoons

A man walking with his 3-year-old son on 86th Street was attacked, robbed and even bitten by four punks on July 16.

The quartet approached the father as he and his son were walking at around 9:30 near 25th Avenue. One of the thugs told him to “give me money,” while the others kicked, and one even bit him.

During the ensuing scuffle, one of the punks took $400 out of the victim’s front pocket and fled along with his buddies, police said.

The man and his son were virtually unharmed, save for a few teeth marks.

Bedroom bandits

A woman returned to her Bay Ridge Parkway home to find burglars in her bedroom ransacking the place for cash and goods on July 11.

When the woman returned to the home, which is near 21st Avenue, at around 7:20 pm, she did notice that her front air conditioner had been pushed out of the window. She carefully walked into her bedroom to find the two punks looking through her dresser drawers. The victim immediately screamed, scaring off the thugs, who had already pocketed $4,000, police said.

They fled through the front door with the cash.

Updated 4:00 pm, November 10, 2010
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