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Couples Allege Wedding Photo Scam On Long Island

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Camera (file / credit: clipart.com)

Camera (file / credit: clipart.com)

ST. JAMES, NY (WCBS 880) - The honeymoon is long over, but many Long Island newlyweds are still waiting to see the photos and videos of their big day.

WCBS 880’s Sophia Hall On The Story

On Sept. 9, 2007, Danielle Rella was a beautiful smiling bride but after dealing with photographer Gary Leli, whose business operated out of St. James, she is not smiling anymore.

Rella told WCBS 880 reporter Sophia Hall that after paying him over $4,000, she never received her wedding video, and it took over two years to receive a few photos.

“I never thought it was going to be this bad, and because I referred so many brides to him I thought he would at least do the right thing by us,” said Rella on Tuesday. “He has all of his assets in his wife’s name and all the people I talked to who won their lawsuits successfully, none of them have recovered anything in terms of money.”

Rella is not alone.

Julianna Mercaldi said she paid Leli nearly $7,000 and almost five years later she is still waiting for the video.

“My husband’s brother was just diagnosed with M.S. He was the best man. He gave such a beautiful speech,” said Mercaldi. “We have family members during the holidays wanting to see the video.”

The photographer did not return Hall’s call for comment.

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