Pericles Linardos

Sophia Hall/WCBS 880

L.I. Man Says He'd Rather To Go Jail Than Pay $23,000 Tree Removal Fine

June 11, 2018 - 1:45 pm

MUTTONTOWN, N.Y. (WCBS 880) -- A Long Island man is fighting a $23,000 fine for removing trees he said were damaged because of Superstorm Sandy.

"I would rather go to jail than give them that money," said Pericles Linardos of Muttontown.

Linardos received the fine because the village claims he removed seven healthy trees after Superstorm Sandy. But the first responder with the East Norwich Fire Department said the trees were damaged or fell – one of them onto his first responder vehicle.

The village said Linardos should have gotten permits for the trees. Linardos said no one else had to do so after Sandy.

"The biggest thing I find offensive is when an attorney for the village says that Mr. Linardos is playing the first responder card,” he said. “If that's what you call leaving your family all hours of the night, hundreds of times for months after Sandy, then I'm entitled to play that card, because that reflects on the police offices for this village. That reflects on any first responders."

Linardos, 53, who ran for mayor of the village and has been outspoken about certain issues, said he is being targeted by the village administration.

Village officials did not respond to a request for comment.