2009-04-17 / Front Page

Busted For Borrowing Sis's Car, Selling It

By Howard Schwach

A Rockaway man who borrowed his sister's Mercedes Benz sedan and then sold it to a dealer for cash, was arrested last week on a myriad of charges related to the incident, police say.

According to court papers supplied by Queens District Attorney Richard Brown, Ralph Iorio, 47, moved into his sister's house on Beach 131 Street in September of 2008.

Shortly after Ralph moved in, his sister, Raffaelene Iorio, loaned him her 2007 Mercedes to use for a short, specified period of time.

Court papers allege that was the last time Raffaelene ever saw her car, despite the fact, she told police, that she repeatedly asked Ralph to return it.

Instead of returning the vehicle, he came up with excuses, telling his sister that the car was still in his possession, and safe, court papers say.

When she lost her patience and told him that she was going to call the police if he did not return the car immediately, Ralph reportedly told her that she "would be sorry" if she notified authorities.

Ralph moved out of his sister's home on October 15, without returning the vehicle.

Raffaelene continued to ask Ralph for her car, and he continued to tell her that it was safe.

After he moved out, however, Raffaelene found that the title to the car was missing from the dresser drawer in which she had kept her papers.

She then called police. Detectives from the Queens Detective Area 100 checked the status of the automobile.

Police found that Ralph utilized a forged document to sell the car to a Brooklyn auto repair shop, which then transferred the title to a Chevrolet dealership in New Jersey. The Mercedes was subsequently sold at auction, police say.

Iorio was charged in Queens Criminal Court with attempting to intimidate a witness, petit larceny, unauthorized use of a motor vehicle, criminal possession of stolen property, and aggravated harassment.

He was released on his own recognizance and is due back in court on May 11 to answer the complaint.

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