RYAN Hadeed, a Trinidadian who lives in Pembroke Pines, Fort Lauderdale, Florida, has been sentenced to 84 months in federal prison for mailing a hitman US$10,000.
Hadeed pleaded guilty in July and was sentenced on Thursday by US district judge William P Dimitrouleas.
The money was payment for a foiled attempt to have his ex-girlfriend’s new lover killed in 2021, the US Department of Justice (DOJ) said.
A spokesman from the DOJ confirmed Hadeed’s sentence on Thursday morning.
After his release, he will be on supervised release for three years.
Hadeed, 43, used the US postal service to “solicit, plan, and pay for the murder of his former girlfriend’s new love interest.”
He pleaded guilty on July 27 in federal court to a charge of using the mail to commit murder-for-hire. He faced up to ten years in federal prison and a US$250,000 fine.
As part of his guilty plea, Hadeed admitted that in September 2021, he mailed a letter to the intended hitman asking for murder services: “I need someone eliminated. I've been told you can arrange that. $10,000 All in cash and upfront. Person located in Tampa,” he wrote.
In the letter, and in two later ones, Hadeed instructed the intended hitman to signal his acceptance of the offer by posting marked sheets of paper on a store-front window, among other things.
On November 10, 2021, the intended hitman received a final mailing from Hadeed that included a description and pictures of the man Hadeed wanted killed, the victim’s home address and likely travel schedule, and a deadline for the murder.
Also inside the envelope was US$10,000 cash.
“The intended victim, who remains alive, is romantically involved with Hadeed’s former girlfriend,” the DOJ said in a statement when he pleaded guilty.
Hadeed left the country on a one-way ticket on the day the hitman received the cash and pictures.
The DOJ said during a secondary customs inspection of Hadeed when he returned to the US from his international trip, additional evidence was uncovered. Law enforcement officers, who had learned of the crime, arrested Hadeed.
Federal prosecutors filed a case against him in December 2021.
He is a former columnist for a local newspaper (not Newsday).