Kings County District Attorney Charles J. Hynes today announced the conviction of Christopher Aldorasi, 35, on 20 of the 22 counts he was charged with, in a multi-million dollar human tissue theft conspiracy.
“The victims of this conspiracy can finally begin to rest in peace, since one more of the monsters who defiled their corpses has been convicted,” said District Attorney Hynes. “This case has brought to light the need for new laws criminalizing misconduct in the funeral home industry, as well as the tissue donation industry. It also highlights the need for a felony Reckless Endangerment charge that applies to actions demonstrating a depraved indifference to human life. In this case such a crime would have been charged against the defendants, for allowing diseased, or otherwise tainted, tissue to be cleared for transplant into thousands of patients.”
When he is sentenced, May, 28, Aldorasi could receive up to 60 years in prison. The top charges, Enterprise Corruption, a Class-B Felony, carries up to 25 years in prison. Other charges Aldorasi was convicted of include Falsification of Business Records in the First Degree, Grand Larceny in the Third Degree and Reckless Endangerment in the Second Degree.
Aldorasi and four co-defendants, Michael Mastromarino, 44; Joseph Nicelli, 52; and Lee Cruceta, 35, were all charged in February 2006, in a 122-count indictment, with orchestrating a large-scale, criminal enterprise, in which tissues were harvested from people who either never consented before they died, to be donors, or whose medical conditions or ages would have prevented them from donating tissue. Those tissues were then sold to medical companies for use in surgical transplants, such as bone and skin grafts.
Mastromarino pleaded guilty in March and will be sentenced May 21, to 18 to 54 years in prison. Cruceta pleaded guilty and testified against Aldorasi. He will be sentenced at a later date. Nicelli’s case is still pending.
The cases are being prosecuted by Rackets Division Bureau Chief Patricia McNeil, Deputy Bureau Chief Josh Hanshaft, Rackets Division First Deputy Bureau Chief Michael Perkins and Chief Counsel to the Rackets Division Monique Ferrell. Michael Vecchione is Chief of the Rackets Division.