You know how it is.
The meeting took place at a gas station near Exit 58 of the Long Island Expressway last month. There, the parents of Aaron Hand, a mortgage broker in prison for a fraud scheme, met with an associate of their son and handed over $150. Mr. Hand’s parents and the associate thought Mr. Hand needed the money to bribe a prison guard, prosecutors said, and the associate went to a diner on the Upper East Side and gave the cash to a man he believed to be a friend of the guard. Everybody, it seems, was mistaken. Mr. Hand, prosecutors say, wanted the $150 as a down payment for a killing.
The man in the diner turned out to be an undercover investigator working for the Manhattan district attorney. He had pretended to be a hit man in meetings with Mr. Hand, who wanted someone to kill a witness who had testified against him, prosecutors said. The investigator wore a recording device as Mr. Hand negotiated the details of what he wanted, prosecutors said. He told the investigator, whom he agreed to pay $2,000, to station one man at the front stoop of the target’s house and two in the back of the house, Mr. Moser said. “Rush the back and pop, and pop right through the back door,” Mr. Hand said, according to Mr. Moser. “Boom. Lights are shattered. ... Rush in, boom, boom, boom.”
Mr. Hand’s lawyer, Kevin Michael Canfield, said his client had been the victim of a setup by the Police Department and prosecutors. “Basically, this man was entrapped by the authorities,” Mr. Canfield said. “He never wanted to hurt anyone, to kill anyone.”