A former All-Long Island high school football player pleaded guilty Monday to orchestrating a botched 2009 robbery that led to the killing of a Bohemia man, officials said.
John Moglia, 32, of Sayville, who starred as a lineman on the Farmingdale football team in 1999, admitted in federal court in Central Islip to masterminding the attempted December 2009 robbery of the home of an accused marijuana dealer in which the homeowner was shot and killed.
Moglia, who pleaded guilty to a charge of conspiracy to commit robbery in interference of interstate commerce, had planned the robbery but was not present at the home during the killing, officials said.
As part of a plea bargain, Moglia agreed to accept a sentence of 20 years in prison, according to his attorney Anthony La Pinta, of Hauppauge.
The target of the robbery was Steven Privitera, officials said, but an associate of Moglia's allegedly shot and killed Privitera's father when he attempted to intercede in the stickup. The father was also named Steven Privitera.
Officials said that the father, 53, who lived in the house with his son, was not involved in any drug dealing.
The younger Privitera or other family members could not immediately be reached for comment Monday.
In court, Moglia said that the case in which the elder Privitera was killed was the third time he had made plans to rob the younger Privitera.
Moglia said he and members of his crew went to the Bohemia house in June 2009 and "stole [a] safe that had approximately $144,000, jewelry, marijuana and pills and some other loose cash, as well as a shotgun."
In November 2009, Moglia said he sent other members of his crew to the house for a second robbery attempt. But they ended up going to the wrong address, he said.
In a third robbery attempt in December 2009, which ended in the death of Privitera, Moglia said he arranged "for another crew to go back to the location. . . . Following the robbery, I learned that one of my co-conspirators shot and killed someone inside the home during the robbery."
Defense attorney La Pinta said afterward, "We are satisfied with the terms of the plea. Mr. Moglia has taken full responsibility for his actions." Eastern District federal prosecutor Nicole Boeckmann declined to comment.
Three other people accused of being involved in Moglia's crew have been arrested in connection with the case, including Rhamaad Spaan, who allegedly fatally shot Privitera. The three, who have pleaded not guilty, are all awaiting further proceedings, according to court records.
Moglia said in a 1999 Newsday article that he had had troubled early teen years, but had turned his life around after transferring from Sayville to Farmingdale High School.
"I made some bad decisions," the then-17-year-old said. "I never ran away from anything, which was stupid."