Unlicensed contractor sentenced for stealing from seniors

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Robert Cohan, sentenced to prison for stealing payment from senior citizens. (Photo courtesy of the Office of the District Attorney Nassau County)

A Queens man was sentenced last Tuesday for taking money from a New Hyde Park senior and 10 others across Nassau County for home repairs that either not completed or not worked on.

Robert Cohan, 31, was sentenced to two to four years in prison for stealing $96,100 in payment from clients that had hired him for home repairs, according to a Nassau County District Attorney release.

“This defendant is going to prison because he preyed upon innocent seniors with threats and lies to steal thousands from vulnerable victims,” Nassau County District Attorney Madeline Singas said in a release. “Preying on the elderly is especially despicable and I am grateful to our prosecutors for holding (this) shameless con man accountable.”

Among the East Rockaway man’s victims were senior citizens from New Hyde Park, Malverne, Garden City, Amityville, Valley Stream and South Hempstead, Singas said in the release.

According to Singas, Cohan would knock on doors and tell residents they needed repairs done on their homes and properties, but after signing a contract and receiving a check for payment from the victim, Cohan did little or none of the agreed upon work.

Cohan pleaded guilty before Judge Robert Bogle on April 27 to grand larceny in the third degree, scheme to defraud in the first degree and attempted scheme to defraud in the first degree, according to the  release.

Cohan committed these crimes on 11 separate incidents between January 2016 and April 2017, Singas said in a release.

According to the release, during a separate investigation the Nassau County District Attorney’s Office  found that in one incident Cohan threatened an 89-year-old man from Malverne.

Cohan told the victim he would report him to the Town of Hempstead and Adult Protective Services, and that he could ultimately lose his house, if he didn’t’ agree to him painting the exterior of his house and doing work on his driveway, stoop and chimney.

The man paid Cohan $22,100, which he later tried to get back after cancelling the project. According to the release, Cohan said he’d return the money but never did.

Efforts to reach Cohan’s lawyer, Greg Zak, were unavailing.

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