NEWARK —Two Parlin brothers pleaded guilty Wednesday to an extortion conspiracy stemming from a scheme to extort payments from a Hawthorne businessman, U.S. Attorney Paul J. Fishman announced.
Peter Ventricelli, 33, and his brother Mark Ventricelli, 27, each pleaded guilty mid-trial to a count of conspiracy to commit extortion against a victim identified in court documents as “M.H.,” the owner of a Hawthorne landscaping business.
In pleading guilty, the brothers admitted that they had conspired to obtain money and property from the victim through the use of threats of force and violence. Another co-conspirator, Michael C. Sciarra, 75, of Pompton Plains, pleaded guilty before U.S. District Judge Stanley R. Chesler on April 29, to one count of committing extortion against M.H. with respect to a specific debt.
At sentencing, Peter and Mark Ventricelli each face a maximum potential penalty of 20 years in prison and a fine of $250,000, or twice the pecuniary gain or loss from the offense. Sentencing for the Ventricellis is currently scheduled for Aug. 23. Sciarra is scheduled to be sentenced on July 27.
Fishman credited special agents of the FBI, under the direction of Special Agent in Charge Michael B. Ward in Newark, with the investigation leading to the guilty pleas.
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