UK & World News

  • 22 November 2012, 11:10

Man Charged Over New York Shopkeeper Slayings

Police in New York have charged a discount clothing dealer they suspect of being involved in the murder of three city shopkeepers of Middle Eastern descent.

New York City Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly said 63-year-old Staten Island resident Salvatore Perrone was arrested on Wednesday on murder charges in the Brooklyn shooting deaths.

Police said Perrone had tried to sell clothing to the shopkeepers.

A bag containing a sawn-off rifle believed to have been used in the killings was recovered by officers looking to question a person they called 'John Doe Duffel Bag'.

Officers said balding Perrone appeared on surveillance footage carrying the bag moments after the most recent shooting last Friday.

The other killings happened in July and August. All three shopkeepers were alone in stores that had no video cameras.

"It's reasonable to assume he was going to continue doing this," Commissioner Kelly said in a news conference on Wednesday.

"He went to other locations and asked questions that indicated he may have been planning to come back."

The most recent killing claimedRahmatollah Vahidipour, a Jewish man from Iran.

He was shot three times in the head and chest at his She She Boutique.

Detectives matched the spent .22 calibre cases to the fatal shootings of two other shopkeepers.

On July 6, Mohamed Gebeli, 65, a Muslim Egyptian immigrant was found shot in the back of his shop, Valentino Fashion Inc.

On August 6, Isaac Kadare, 59, also Egyptian but Jewish, was shot in the head in his store, Amazing 99 Cent Deal.

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