Niagara Gazette — LOCKPORT — The cases of Filippo Inglima are finally over.
In a brief proceeding in Niagara County Court on Wednesday, where the prominent former Falls and Lewiston chef and restaurateur was not present, Inglima was sentenced to a term of one year in the Niagara County Jail for his guilty plea to sexually abusing a young girl.
The sentence will run concurrently to Inglima’s decade-long sentence on a federal drug conspiracy charge. He surrendered to officials at the Federal Correctional Complex in Allenwood, Pa., on Feb. 13 to begin serving his prison time.
Inglima will have to register as a sex offender and will have a hearing just before his federal prison release to determine his sex offender registration (SORA) level. After his release from prison, he is expected to be immediately deported back his native country of Italy.
Niagara County Court Judge Sara Sheldon Farkas also signed an order of protection barring Inglima from any contact with the sexual abuse victim.
Inglima was indicted by a Niagara County grand jury on four counts of first-degree sexual abuse, one count of second-degree sexual abuse, three counts of third-degree sexual abuse and a single count of endangering the welfare of a child in November 2012. He pleaded guilty in March.
The popular chef was accused of “sexually touching” and having “sexual contact” with a then 14-year-old girl beginning in July 2004 and continuing that contact until July 2005. He was also charged with sexually abusing the same victim, now 22, while she worked at a South End restaurant he operated in the Falls in July 2011.
The victim in the case was not present in court on Wednesday either. She did appear at Inglima’s last county court hearing in early February.
At that time, Assistant District Attorney Robert Zucco said the victim had sent a letter to Farkas telling the judge about the impact the crime has had on her life.
“As is often the case with the sexual abuse of a child, it destroys the child’s trust in people,” Zucco said.
Inglima’s federal sentence stemmed from his guilty plea to a charge that he conspired to bring marijuana into the United States and send cocaine into Canada as part of an international drug smuggling ring.
U.S. District Court Judge Richard Arcara sentenced Inglima, 46, 2825 Thornwood Road, Wheatfield, to the minimum federal prison term he could have received. Arcara noted that Inglima was well regarded in the community and had never been in trouble before being charged in the drug conspiracy case.
Inglima, his business partner in a North Buffalo restaurant, David Gambino, and 22 other individuals were indicted in November 2009 on charges of conspiracy to possess and distribute more than 1,000 kilograms of marijuana, 5 kilograms of cocaine and more than 500 grams of so-called “club drugs” like Ecstacy.
Federal prosecutors said Inglima was involved in moving more than 100 kilos of coke and over 1,800 kilos of marijuana during the conspiracy.