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A former police officer, who previously shared a cell with Jeffrey Epstein, has been sentenced to life in prison for committing four murders

FBI investigators remove a backhoe seized from the Crawford (Jimmy Marsh/Shutterstock)

A former police officer who was convicted of killing four people, including a man he tortured and strangled over stolen drug money, was given four consecutive life sentences in prison on Monday.

Nicholas Tartaglione, 56, used to work as an officer in Briarcliff Manor, a village in the Hudson River Valley. His case gained attention due to the brutal nature of the crimes and his brief time as a cellmate with Jeffery Epstein, a well-known figure who died by suicide while awaiting trial on federal charges related to sex trafficking.

The man Tartaglione tortured, Martin Luna, was accused by prosecutors of stealing $250,000 meant for buying cocaine from Tartaglione. The other three victims were friends or family who were with Luna at a club when Tartaglione and two others kidnapped them in 2016.

Water gushes out of broken water line (Via Jeff Clark/Shutterstock)

According to prosecutors, Tartaglione strangled Martin Luna with a zip tie while Urbano Santiago, Miguel Luna, and Hector Gutierrez were forced to watch. All four men were then shot and their bodies were found buried together on Tartaglione’s property in Otisville, New York.

Tartaglione had served in several suburban police departments before retiring due to disability from Briarcliff Manor in 2008. He has consistently maintained his innocence, claiming during the trial that he operated an animal rescue farm and was not driven by money, as reported by The Journal News.

One of the men suspected of aiding in the murders committed suicide in his car in 2017 as FBI agents were preparing to arrest him. Another accomplice, Joseph Biggs, received a 16-year prison sentence after pleading guilty to killing one of the victims. Biggs testified as a witness in Tartaglione’s trial.

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