Increasingly congested traffic in cities across the country are resulting in more drivers being stressed out, impatient and angry, and New York is no exception. It is one thing for drivers in the Big Apple to honk their horns, use an angry gesture or cut people off. While these behaviors could cause an accident if others react angrily in response, they are not generally considered against the law. It is another matter, however, when drivers purposefully attempt to harm someone else.

This behavior is known as road rage. Intentionally targeting another driver by using a weapon, chasing the other vehicle down or cornering the other person for a confrontation are considered assault and can result in criminal charges. An incident that occurred earlier this month on the west side illustrates how quickly and unexpectedly a road rage incident can escalate. As reported by CBS New York, a motorcyclist and an SUV driver became involved in a verbal argument over unknown circumstances. Witnesses said the SUV driver struck the motorcycle rider and pinned him underneath his vehicle, resulting in injuries that were fortunately not life-threatening. The man was arrested, and authorities say he is facing charges.

Drivers who are upset by a real or perceived slight may become so angry that they react without thinking, which can result in an otherwise law-abiding citizen doing something he or she may later regret. It might help to remember to stay calm in traffic, to take deep breaths and to remind one’s self that other drivers may not intentionally cause offense. Those who are facing charges, however, are entitled to a competent defense.

By : First Page Attorney | May 28, 2018 | Vehicular Assault Or Homicide



If you’re pulled over in New York on suspicion of drunk driving, chances are you’ll have to submit to a chemical test also known as a breathalyzer, for alcohol-related incidents. The question is, is it within your rights to refuse to take the test?

The short answer is no. New York State has a law against chemical test refusal, called the implied consent law. The law says that anyone operating a motorized vehicle gives implicit consent to submit to a chemical test when asked to by police. This means you’re already obligated to comply once you hit the road.

Refusing a chemical test is charged as a separate crime from the DWI, so a DWI could be an additional charge.

So what happens if I refuse?

If you are arrested for a DWI or DWAI and refuse a chemical test from a police officer, your license will be suspended and you could face a fine, in line with regular DWI consequences.

You’ll likely have to go to a DMV hearing where it will be confirmed that you refused the test. If this is the case, you’ll get your license revoked for at least a year. You’ll also face a fine of at least $500. This is in addition to the charges and penalties you’ll receive for the DWI.

Even if you are not charged with a DWI, you can still face consequences for refusing the chemical test.

If you refuse a chemical test, your license will be suspended for a mandatory 6 months and you will be issued a $300 fine. Then, if you refuse a second test within five years of the first, your license will be suspended for a year and you’ll have to pay a $750 fine.

What if I’m a minor?

If you’re under the age of 21, the penalty is more severe. If you refuse to take a chemical test while underage, your license is revoked for a minimum of a year, regardless of whether or not you’re charged with a DWI.

If you refuse a second chemical test within five years of your first charge, your license is revoked until you turn 21.

So what should I do?

To put it simply, if you refuse a chemical test, you run the risk of double penalties. You can still be charged with a DWI, DWAI or Zero Tolerance after you have already faced penalties from a test refusal. It’s more than likely your license will be revoked in addition to the consequences of a DWI.

By : First Page Attorney | May 24, 2018 | Uncategorized



At the Law Office of Scott G. Cerbin, Esq., PLLC, in New York, we know that facing federal criminal charges is a very frightening experience. Your freedom is at stake, you could have to pay very substantial fines if convicted, and your reputation is in shambles.

Having RICO charges filed against you is particularly frightening, even though all RICO crimes are of the white collar variety and not violent. Nevertheless, the very acronym RICO conjures up visions of relentless Elliott Ness-type agents in “Untouchables” organizations taking on and convicting such notorious Prohibition-era gangsters as Al Capone.

As explained by the Offices of the United States Attorneys, however, Congress did not pass RICO, the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organization Act,  until 1970. Italian Mafia members were its original targets. Over the past 47 years, however, federal law enforcement officials and prosecutors have used the RICO statute to prosecute people they believed were engaged in any of the following:

  • Money laundering
  • Embezzlement
  • Counterfeiting
  • Bribery
  • Mail fraud
  • Any other type of racketeering covered by the RICO statute

Elements of proof

The prosecutor must prove all five of the following elements to convict you of a RICO violation:

  1. Something called an enterprise existed.
  2. It employed you or you were somehow part of it.
  3. You and it committed acts a/k/a predicates that affected interstate commerce.
  4. You and it committed at least two predicates within a single decade.
  5. The activities of you and it amounted to a racketeering pattern.

“Enterprise” defined

For RICO purposes, an enterprise can be a corporation, partnership or any formal legal entity; an informal entity such as a loose association whose members act together; or two individuals who act in concert with each other.

“Racketeering pattern” defined

To qualify as a closed-end pattern, the two or more prohibited predicates that you and the entity allegedly committed had to occur within a 10-year period and pose a continuing threat in the future. To qualify as an open-ended pattern, you and the entity need only to have committed one recent predicate, but it, too, must pose a continuing future threat.

If convicted of multiple RICO violations, you could spend up to 20 years in prison for each separate conviction. You also face an extremely high fine for each conviction. It could be as high as $250,000 or twice the amount of money or other proceeds you and the entity received from your illegal activities.

For more information on this subject, please visit this page of our website.

By : First Page Attorney | May 10, 2018 | Federal Crimes

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I am attorney Scott G. Cerbin, Esq., and my firm is located in downtown Brooklyn near the Borough Hall and Jay Street stops. The Law Office Of Scott G. Cerbin, Esq., PLLC, offers free initial consultations to individuals living within all five New York City boroughs. You can reach me at any hour of the day or night, regardless of the complexity of your issue.

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