A Diamond District jewelry dealer says the NYPD unfairly yanked his gun permit over the bribes-for-weapons scandal turning him into “a classic crime victim in the making” because he “routinely carries … a king’s ransom” through the city “with absolutely no protection.”
Now he’s suing the NYPD to get back his piece and peace of mind.
Yechiel Fastag, 32, owner of CFE Diamonds at 580 Fifth Ave., was approved for an “unrestricted carry business license” in Oct. 2015.
He needs the permit because he “routinely carries precious stones and a king’s ransom in currency in the late evening and early morning hours through highly dangerous neighborhoods with absolutely no protection,” Fastag says in his suit challenging the revocation.
Then in May 2016 his permit was suspended because Shomrim patrol leader Alex Shaya Lichtenstein helped him obtain his gun license.
Lichtenstein was sentenced to 32 months behind bars in March for giving cops cash in exchange for expedited permits.
Fastag’s permit was yanked in April because of his connection to Lichtenstein — even though he insists he was “completely unaware” of the bribery ring.
The NYPD also determined that Fastag did “not demonstrate a need for a full carry license.” In his suit to get the license back, Fastag detail s late night trips he’s taken including an 11:30 p.m. meeting last November to deliver two pear-shaped stones worth $135,000 to someone named “Chamoula”in Crown Heights.
He also provides receipts for deposits ranging from $9,000 to $203,000.
“Collectively petitioner’s submissions paint a compelling, utterly convincing, and wholly undisputed picture of a classic crime victim in the making,” his Manhattan Supreme Court suit says.
Fastag claims in court papers that he is “an innocent victim of Mr. Lichtenstein’s crimes.”
Still an NYPD licensing division hearing officer accused Fastag in January of colluding with Lichtenstein, saying, “What did you think was really happening?” according to his suit.
Fastag says he’s been wrongly ensnared in the NYPD’s “pound of flesh” damage control campaign.
He says he’s an “upstanding member of his community and a highly responsible person.”
City reps did not immediately return requests for comment.