A Brooklyn woman and a man from Long Island were indicted by a Queens grand jury for a third time on kidnapping and assault charges, with each facing up to 75 years in prison if convicted on all indictments.
Destiny Lebron, 19, of North Portland Avenue in the Fort Greene section of Brooklyn, and Gil Iphael, 22, of Copiague Street in Valley Stream, Nassau County, were arraigned on Thursday, Oct. 27, before Queens Supreme Court Justice Peter Vallone on a 14-count indictment charging them with kidnapping, assault and other charges for an August attack in Richmond Hill. The defendants, who have two other pending cases, face up to 25 years in prison if convicted in this case, according to Queens District Attorney Melinda Katz.
On Aug. 14, a 23-year-old man went to 91-42 108th St. in response to an online prostitution advertisement, according to the charges. As the victim entered the residence, he was directed to wait inside a bedroom. Lebron entered the room and removed the victim’s shoes and socks. Iphael then entered the room and threatened the victim and repeatedly punched him in the face, head and body. The couple then applied a numbing agent to the victim’s toe, demanded money and attempted to make transfers from his CASH APP account. When the victim refused, Iphael used a tool and began to cut the victim’s toe and threatened to cut it off if he didn’t comply. The victim eventually complied with the couple’s demands.
According to the charges, Iphael took the victim’s car keys and gave them to Lebron, who went to the car and took the man’s wallet. They took the victim’s identification and several licenses, along with his debit and credit cards. They demanded the victim’s PIN number and threatened him with further harm. After receiving the PIN number, Iphael left the room, went to a nearby deli and made a cash withdrawal at an ATM. When he returned, he gave the card and PIN number to Lebron ,who also made a cash withdrawal.
The defendants then forced the victim to make a recording stating that he was at the location to engage in sexual activity with a 13-year-old girl and then threatened to post the video on the internet if he reported the incident to the police, according to charges. Before Iphael released the man, he returned some of the items and further threatened to harm his family if he reported the incident to the NYPD.
The victim went to a nearby urgent care facility, where he received eight stitches to his toe and he immediately called the police.
“These defendants, who are thankfully off the streets, are accused of a spree of assault, kidnapping and robbery charges for their own financial benefit,” Katz said. “Both defendants are in custody and will be held accountable.”
Justice Vallone ordered the defendants to return to court on Nov. 17.
Katz asked that if anyone has information relevant to this investigation, they should report it to the NYPD’s Human Trafficking Squad at 212-694-3031.