WHITE PLAINS – A school security guard has been arrested on charges he helped ex-cop Nicholas Tartaglione kill four Middletown men in a Chester nightclub in a scheme to distribute cocaine, the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York announced Thursday.
Joseph Biggs, 55, of Nanuet, was charged in a superceding indictment along with Tartaglione with the murders of Martin Luna, Urbano Santiago, Miguel Luna and Hector Gutierrez. The indictment also includes firearms and kidnapping charges against Biggs and Tartaglione. Biggs works as a security guard at a school in Hastings-on-Hudson in Westchester County.
Prosecutors say Tartaglione and Biggs conspired from June 2015 to April 2016 to traffic five kilograms or more of cocaine. On April 11, 2016, prosecutors say, Tartaglione and Biggs lured Martin Luna to the Likquid Lounge in Chester under false pretenses. Santiago, Miguel Luna and Gutierrez accompanied Martin Luna to meet the other men.
At the bar, prosecutors say, Martin Luna was held captive and killed; the other three were held captive, shot in the head and killed. Prosecutors did not specify how Martin Luna died.
The indictment says Tartaglione and Biggs “lured Martin Luna to the Likquid Lounge, where they confined ‘the victims’ and would not permit them to leave the premises.”
The case has been investigated by the FBI, state police and Chester village police.
Biggs was taken into custody Thursday morning and presented in White Plains federal court, where he was ordered detained. Tartaglione was arrested on Dec. 19 and remains in federal custody. He was previously indicted on murder and narcotics charges.
Selina Luna is the daughter of Martin Luna, the cousin of Miguel Luna and Santiago, and Gutierrez was a friend of her family.
“It bothers me that these men are supposed to be protecting and guiding us,” she said. “How is a community supposed to trust their kids in the safety of anyone when you have men like these?”
The new indictment charges Tartaglione and Biggs with conspiracy to distribute five kilograms or more of cocaine, four counts of murder in the furtherance of a narcotics conspiracy, three counts of use of a firearm in furtherance of drug trafficking resulting in death, kidnapping conspiracy, four counts of kidnapping resulting in death, and four counts of travel or use of an interstate facility with intent to commit a violent crime, resulting in death.
The men could face the death penalty if convicted.