A prosecutor called demolition supervisors charged in the deaths of two firefighters in a 2007 blaze at the Deutsche Bank building "greedy and highly irresponsible people who cut corners to make money" as summations continued in the 10-week-old trial.

The three defendants, working on asbestos abatement and tear-down of the building near Ground Zero that was damaged on Sept. 11, 2001, are accused of cutting an emergency standpipe and depriving firemen of water when they arrived to fight a fire on the 17th floor.

"It's one thing to gamble with your own lives, but another to gamble with the lives of firefighters," said prosecutor Joel Seidemann. "They were the ones who were going to have to run into a burning building to put out a fire."

The Manhattan Supreme Court trial focuses on the deaths of firefighters Joseph Graffagnino, 33, and Robert Beddia, 53. Dozens of other firemen were hurt in the Aug. 18, 2007, fire.

Mitchel Alvo, 58, of Huntington Station; co-worker Sal DePaola, 56, of Staten Island; their employer, subcontractor the John Galt Corp., and Jeffrey Melofchik, 49, of New Jersey, a site safety manager, are charged with manslaughter and criminally negligent homicide.

The defendants claim that they did not know the pipe that was cut in the building's basement was an emergency water conduit, and that an unusual ventilation system that dragged choking smoke down on the firemen -- rather than the lack of water -- caused the deaths.

Seidemann, however, dismissed claims that the ventilation system -- designed to keep asbestos from escaping -- created an unavoidable "perfect storm."

"Joey Graffagnino and Bobby Beddia did not die because of some Japanese tsunami or unpredictable event," he said. "Their deaths were the predictable result of the actions" of the defendants.

He said water would have saved the day. "Fundamental fairness to firefighters," Seidemann said, "should not include the risks of going into the belly of a fire without water."

He said the standpipe was cut because delays and cost overruns on the project put enormous pressure on supervisors to move fast, and they didn't want to spend the time cleaning it of asbestos.

Melofchik, the prosecutor said, was responsible for conducting daily inspections to make sure the standpipe was working right. Even if he didn't know it had been cut, he never tested it in 239 days between the removal of the pipe and the fire.

"That is one number I want you to take in the jury room with you," Seidemann said. "If (Melofchik) had done his job one time in 239 days, Joey Graffagnino would be eating birthday cake with his family, and Bobby Beddia would be cracking jokes in the East Village."

Melofchik and DePaola are having their case heard by the jury.

Alvo and Galt are having their cases determined by Manhattan Supreme Court Judge Rena Uviller, who will hear closing arguments in their cases on Monday.

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