Three Charged In ‘Bizarre’ Queens Home Break-in

NEW YORK (Reuters) -

Three men were arrested on Friday for breaking into a Queens home, changing the locks and demanding that the rightful owners turn over the deed, in a case that a prosecutor called “truly bizarre.”

The case goes back to late April when a woman returned to her home and discovered that the locks had been changed and three men were inside. The trio claimed to be working with the bank that held the mortgage on the property and demanded that she sign papers, including a deed transfer, according to county District Attorney Richard Brown.

“In a truly bizarre case, the defendants are accused of breaking into a Queens residence and locking the true owners out, then forcing them to negotiate with the defendants if they wanted to gain access to their own home,” Brown said.

The woman told brothers Brandon and Chas Sestoso and Jesse Kusinow that her husband, the sole owner of the home, was in China at the time. They exchanged emails with him but he refused to sign the papers.

The homeowner returned in May with a locksmith, entered, and discovered the home ransacked, with jewelry, cash and other possessions missing.