A Levittown man was sentenced Monday to two terms of life in prison for conspiring to murder the United States District Judge and federal prosecutor involved in his fraud conviction two years ago.
Joseph Romano was convicted in January for plotting to pay an undercover police officer $40,000 to kill the judge and prosecutor and to cut off each of their heads for a “bonus,” prosecutors said.
Authorities became aware of the 51-year-old’s murder-for-hire plot in August 2012 through an inmate at the Nassau County Correctional Center where Romano was being held. A meeting between the informant and Romano, which had been recorded by the FBI, revealed that the convicted fraudster had specific requests in mind. According to prosecutors, the judge and prosecutor were to be tortured, murdered, mutilated, and beheaded.
During the investigation, two undercover officers posing as hit men met repeatedly with Romano and Dejvid Mirkovic, his co-conspirator, and discussed payments for the murders and a separate assault.
One of the officers was paid a $1,500 down payment for the assault and received a final payment after showing Mirkovic a staged photograph and identification card as proof of the assault. Later that day, Mirkovic relayed instructions to murder the judge and prosecutor.
Mirkovic was sentenced in August to 24 years in prison after pleading guilty to conspiracy to murder.
Romano was previously convicted in February 2012 in Central Islip to 15 years in prison for a multi-million dollar fraud involving the telemarking of coins.