After verdict, Veliz calls Novacks' daughter 'real killer'
VideosJurors in Novack trial explain verdict Pace University law professor discusses Novack verdict Narcy Novack says she will be vindicated
Cristobal Veliz continued to blame another woman Thursday for the murders of a Florida millionaire and his mother the day after a White Plains jury convicted him and his sister, Narcy Novack, of engineering the attacks that led to the killings.
"It was May Abad. She's the real killer," Veliz told News 12, referring to Novack's 36-year-old daughter.
Veliz, 58, of Brooklyn, dismissed the verdict that is likely to land the pair in prison for life when they are sentenced Nov. 1.
"They don't know how to rule. They made a mistake," Veliz said about the jury during a 20-minute phone interview from the Westchester County Jail.
"Narcy loved Ben," he said, insisting that she was not present during the grisly beating. He said his sister is "OK. She's calm."
Veliz also criticized U.S. District Court Judge Kenneth Karas who cut off Veliz's courtroom outbursts during the nine-week trial.
"The judge didn't want to hear when I want to talk," he complained, vowing that there will be an appeal.
Veliz's lawyer, Lawrence Sheehan, declined to comment Thursday, as did a spokesman for U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara.
Veliz and Narcy Novack, 55, were convicted of ordering the brutal attacks that led to the deaths of Ben Novack Jr., 53, and his 86-year-old mother Bernice Novack.
Novack Jr., the son of the founder of the fabled Fontainebleau Hotel in Miami Beach, was fatally beaten with dumbells in July 2009 at the Rye Brook Hilton by two hit men hired by Novack and Veliz. Three months earlier, hit men pummeled Bernice Novack to death with a wrench in her Fort Lauderdale, Fla., home.
In a 15-count indictment, the only charge Veliz and Narcy Novack were cleared of was the felony murder of Novack Jr. Jurors said after the trial that prosecutors did not prove that the killing occurred during the commission of a robbery.
Prosecutors argued that Narcy Novack wanted her husband of 21 years and her mother-in-law dead so she could inherit the family fortune, estimated at $8 million. She feared that her husband was going to leave her for 40-year-old ex-porn actress Rebecca Bliss and that a prenuptial agreement would provide her with a mere $65,000.
During the trial the defense suggested that Abad, 36, hired the hit men so that Abad and her two sons could inherit Novack Jr.'s millions.
Assistant U.S. Attorney Andrew Dember told jurors that the hit men had "no relationship to May Abad. They don't even know who she is."
Abad was not charged in the case and did not testify.