Prosecutors allege that Narcy Novack wanted her husband and mother-in-law out of the way so that she could take control of his lucrative convention planning business — and his money. At the time of his death, her husband had been having an extra-marital affair with a porn star and Narcy Novack feared he was going to leave her.
Veliz, who lived in Philadelphia, had a wife in New York and a litany of mistresses, was the sole witness in his own defense. On his fourth day testifying, he evaded Dember’s questions so defiantly that he was chewed out by the usually even-toned judge, U.S. District Court Judge Kenneth M. Karas.
At one point, Veliz threw his hands up in the air and declared that Dember “is humiliating me.”
Another time, he apologized to the jury for having made jokes a day earlier about a woman he claimed he picked up on one of his bus tours.
But the weirdest moment came toward the end of his testimony, when Dember tried to trip him up over a claim that he had made that his niece, May Abad, had him kidnapped and chained in a basement for 18 days about two months after the killings.
Abad, Narcy Novack’s daughter, threatened to kill him and his grandchildren if he didn’t persuade her mother to give her money from her stepfather’s estate, Veliz contended. Veliz testified that it was Abad, 36, who was the mastermind in the plot to kill the Novacks.
Abad, who lives in Florida, has not been called to testify in the case. Prosecutors have kept her whereabouts secret because Veliz’s brother, Carlos, allegedly tried to hire someone to break her legs.
Carlos Veliz has not been charged in the case.
On Thursday, Narcy Novack’s attorney, Howard Tanner, is expected to begin his case. Still up in the air: whether Narcy Novack will testify in her own defense.