February 2, By Christian Murray
Two men have been sentenced to 13 ½ years in prison for abducting a Woodside resident and holding him hostage in a Sunnyside/LIC warehouse for more than a month in 2013.
District Attorney Richard Brown announced today that Christian Acuna, 38, of Corona, and Dennis Alves, 36, from East Elmhurst, both pleaded guilty to first degree kidnapping. They, along with Eduardo Moncayo, who was sentence to 25 years to life, kidnapped the victim and demanded his mother in Ecuador pay a $3 million ransom.
“This was a horrifying ordeal for the victim, who was forcibly abducted from the streets of Queens County and held against his will in a vacant warehouse for 32 days,” Brown said in a statement. “Throughout those terrifying days, the victim’s fingers were burned with acid and had a tooth knocked out. Even after being rescued, the victim was deeply traumatized by this experience. Under the circumstances, the sentence imposed by the Court was more than warranted.”
According to testimony from the trial, the victim, 52-year-old Pedro Portugal, was approached outside of 88-06 Roosevelt Avenue on April 18, 2013 and Moncayo called out to him by name.
Moncayo then displayed what appeared to be a police badge, and then along with Alves and Acuna grabbed him and forced him in to a nearby SUV.
Once inside the vehicle, Moncayo allegedly punched Portugal in the face and body and put a mask over his face so he could not see anything.
The victim was then driven to a warehouse at 38-09 43rd Avenue and was tied to a chair and beaten. He was then instructed to call his mother in Ecuador and request $3 million in ransom.
Brown said that the victim was held hostage from April 18 until May 20 in 2013, and during that time his hand was burned with acid, and the kidnappers threatened to cut off his fingers and kill him. Portugal also had his tooth knocked out from a punch and suffered bruising, swelling and pain.
Portugal was rescued by the NYPD Major Case Squad on May 20, 2013, when they entered the building and found his hands bound with cloth and duct tape.