NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) – An alleged drug dealer and longtime jazz musician busted in the wake of the apparent fatal overdose of Philip Seymour Hoffman was in court today.
As WCBS 880’s Irene Cornell reported, 57-year-old Robert Vineberg has been charged with felony possession of heroin with intent to sell.
He pleaded not guilty at his arraignment Tuesday. Also during the proceeding Tuesday, Vineberg’s attorney made a request to the judge.
“I filed a motion for judicial diversion pursuant the criminal procedure law section 2.16 which, if granted, would allow him to get into a treatment program rather than continue to be prosecuted,” Edward Kratt said. “The way that diversion works generally is that there’s a plea entered and treatment is then provided in lieu of prosecution if treatment is successfully navigated and the charges are dismissed.”
Kratt said Vineberg was a ten bag a day heroin addict, a friend of the Oscar-winning actor and not his drug dealer.
Authorities found 300 glassine envelopes of heroin in Vineberg’s Mott Street apartment and studio, 1010 WINS’ Juliet Papa reported.
Vineberg has yet to make bail.
The other two defendants arrested in the wake of Hoffman’s death – Juliana Luchkiw and Max Rosenblum – were also indicted Tuesday on one count each of misdemeanor drug possession for cocaine.
Hoffman was found dead in his Greenwich Village apartment earlier this month with a needle still in his arm. The 46-year-old had spoken in recent years about falling off the wagon and getting back into drug use.
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