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Jackson Heights Man Gets Five Months In Jail After Stealing $55,000 In Fake Apartment Rental Scheme

July 23, 2019, Staff Report

A Jackson Heights man will serve five months in prison for a con that involved collecting $55,000 in security deposits from 20 apartment hunters—all for fake apartments.

Ulises Reyes, 39, of Warren Street in Jackson Heights, pleaded guilty to fourth-degree grand larceny and first-degree scheme to defraud earlier this month, according to Queens Acting District Attorney John M. Ryan. He will serve two concurrent five month terms for the crimes followed by five years of probation.

Reyes was also ordered to pay $55,000 in restitution to the victims of the con within nine months, or he will be re-sentenced to up to three years in prison.

According to Ryan, Reyes launched the scheme in September 2016 by advertising rental units in Corona and other locations. He accepted cash deposits of between $1,850 and $4,000 from 20 different would-be renters for the apartments. However, they were never allowed to actually move in.

“The victims in this case were tricked into believing they had found a new home. Instead, they were left out in the cold as a result of the defendant’s insatiable desire to line his pockets with the victims’ hard-earned money,” Ryan said in a statement. “The defendant is going to jail as punishment for this scheme. He must also pay back the money he conned from the numerous victims.”

The Queens DA’s office had earlier stated that Reyes faced at least one year in prison. Today’s sentence was the result of a negotiated plea agreement, the Queens DA’s office said.

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JHeights my whole life

5 months for ripping off people who wanted to rent a home. 5 months for ripping off families, for robbing kids and Grandmas. For taking the money people were supposed to spend on a place to live. The victims were probably forced into homelessness or poor living conditions. And this guy gets 5 months he’ll be home for Christmas how nice.


Five months for stealing $55,000? That’s $11,000 (tax free) for every month he spends in jail. Not a bad income.


Disappointing that the human brain can sink to such low levels. We are capable of so much better.

Sara Ross

5 months? Justice isn’t only blind, it’s deaf and dumb too! He should have gotten AT LEAST 5 years for what he did. 5 months is less time than snowbirds spend in Florida (people who live in NY and spend the winter in Florida).


Sara, keep voting for de Blasio, Katz or Caban, the way things are happening now, next time criminals will be rewarded with restitutions from victims for “emotional damages” or ”unconscious bias”


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