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Judge: Plowden's murder conviction stands

A judge has decided against setting aside a guilty verdict in a Freeport murder case after allegations of juror misconduct.

Nassau County Court Judge Jerald Carter said Monday that he will sentence defendant Jerod Plowden, who is facing 25 years to life in prison, on Friday.

In May, a jury convicted the Queens man of second-degree murder and robbery in the 2011 slaying of Moez Hassan, 23, outside an abandoned Freeport house.

Prosecutors had said Plowden, 25, and another defendant met the victim to supposedly buy Xanax pills from him before a shooting that left Hassan dead.

Defense attorney Michael DerGarabedian said Monday that a juror had made calls seeking advice from her husband, a former New York City prosecutor, while deliberations were underway and that had prejudiced the outcome.

Carter said he saw issues in the case, but only those an appellate court might address.

"I cannot, at this point, set this verdict aside," he said.

DerGarabedian said the defendant will appeal the case.

"It was a politically correct decision, but it was factually off-base," the lawyer said.

The Nassau district attorney's office declined to comment on the ruling.

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