WHITE PLAINS – A convicted killer’s lawsuit alleging a large anti-Semitic conspiracy against him by police, prosecutors, Orange County and City of Newburgh officials and three local judges is still making its way through federal court, reinstated after a 2015 dismissal.
Victor Koltun, an erstwhile rabbi from Brooklyn, was convicted in 2014 of masterminding a murder-for-hire plot that left Frank Piscopo, 49, and Gerald Piscopo, 28, both of Highland, dead on Nov. 4, 2010 in a vacant Newburgh house.
Two other men pleaded guilty to being Koltun’s hired guns in the murder plot.
Prosecutors proved the case against Koltun using cellphone data, video, documents and witnesses.
Koltun was sentenced to two consecutive terms of life without parole.
Koltun filed suit in 2013 while the murder case was pending, contending that he is the the innocent victim of an anti-Semitic plot by then-County Court Judge Jeffrey Berry; then-Newburgh city Judge B. Harold Ramsey; City of Newburgh police and state police; then-District Attorney Frank Phillips; Sheriff Carl DuBois and others at the sheriff’s office; the county attorney; and Koltun’s lawyers, James Winslow and Paul Brite.
Koltun claims he was targeted because of his Orthodox Jewish faith. He says police questioned him on the Sabbath, violating his religious rights, and questioned him without a lawyer.
He claims he was falsely arrested, and that police and prosecutors manufactured the evidence against him and coached false testimony from witnesses. His lawyers, he says, failed to effectively advocate for him.
The entire suit was dismissed in 2014, most of it after Koltun missed a deadline to file a revised complaint.
In August 2015, the Second Circuit Court of Appeals reinstated the case. Koltun refiled in January 2016, adding trial lawyer Glen Plotsky, trial Judge Nicholas De Rosa and current District Attorney David Hoovler as defendants.
Over the past few weeks, lawyers for all of the defendants in the case have filed papers asking the court to dismiss Koltun’s claims.
“Mr. Koltun’s action has no merit and we believe will be dismissed,” said Orange County Attorney Langdon Chapman, who represents the county defendants.
The state Attorney General represents the judges.
Winslow said he’s relying on his lawyer, who assures him that there is no case.
“I am confident that his claim will be dismissed again,” Winslow said.
“I just think he has nothing better to do,” Brite said.
Koltun must file papers opposing the defendants’ motions to dismiss the new suit.