Skip navigation
× You have 2 more free articles available this month. Subscribe today.

Queens Couple Receives $10,000 Settlement after False Arrest and Property Confiscation by NYPD

by Christopher Zoukis

Michael and Alisha Drepaul agreed to a $10,000 settlement with the city of New York in response to Mr. Drepaul’s false arrest and prosecution, and the police confiscation of $9,800 worth of their personal property.

On December 2, 2008, New York City police officers searched the residence of Michael Drepaul, allegedly recovering coconut milk from his refrigerator and some drug paraphernalia, which allegedly belonged to someone else. Drepaul was charged with possession of more than 4 ounces of cocaine and drug paraphernalia, and marijuana crimes. The officers also allegedly confiscated $700 that was on Drepaul, $1,000 cash and about $8,000 worth of jewelry.

Drepaul was arrested by Officer Charles Lovett and jailed for about a week. On December 8, some of the charges were dismissed.

On December 2, 2011, the Drepauls filed a complaint in federal court against Lovett, the city and other unidentified officers, agents and employees, alleging that Mr. Drepaul was unlawfully seized, searched, arrested and imprisoned. They argued that Drepaul was subjected to false arrest, malicious prosecution, abuse of process, intentional infliction of emotional distress and the illegal seizure of their property. The Drepauls sought $420,000 in damages, punitive damages, attorneys fees, costs and disbursements.

 A settlement was reached on March 23, 2012, in which the city of New York agreed to pay Ms. Drepaul $1,000 and Mr. Drepaul $9,000. The case was dismissed by Judge Sterling Johnson, Jr., on April 9, 2013. The Drepauls were represented by Darmin T. Bachu of Bachu & Associates, Kew Gardens, New York.

See: Drepaul, et al., v. City of New York, et al., United States District Court for the Eastern District of New York, Case No. 1:11-cv-05893-SJ-SMG (Mar. 23, 2012)

As a digital subscriber to Prison Legal News, you can access full text and downloads for this and other premium content.

Subscribe today

Already a subscriber? Login

Related legal case

Drepaul, et al., v. City of New York, et al.