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Lawyer seeks psych exam for Fort Lee ex-con towing operator charged with threatening girlfriend with gun

Photo Credit: Mary K. Miraglia, CLIFFVIEW PILOT Courthouse Reporter

ONLY ON CVP: A Fort Lee towing operator caught with a trove of illegal guns could go to prison for more than 20 years if convicted of threatening to kill his girlfriend.

His lawyer, however, said he will seek a psychiatric exam to determine whether Konstadin “Dean” Bitzas, 45, is fit to stand trial.

Assistant Bergen County Prosecutor Vered Adoni offered Bitzas a minimum of 42 months in prison to settle a host of weapons charges and other offenses from a domestic dispute with his long-time girlfriend last Aug. 31.

The situation is more serious for Bitzas because he’s already been convicted of a felony and is prohibited under New Jersey law from owning firearms under any circumstances.

He also faces a separate trial on charges of assaulting police in connection with another incident in Fort Lee, as well as State Police charges out of Ridgefield for false imprisonment and illegal restraint.

According to defense attorney Ron Bar-Nadav, Bitzas refuses to acknowledge his potential legal liability under the law — and insists the Second Amendment protects him on the gun charges.

“I don’t believe he’s capable of understanding the reality of his situation,” Bar-Nadav told CLIFFVIEW PILOT.

Presiding Superior Court Judge Liliana DeAvila-Silebi set a July 28 trial date after warning Bitzas yesterday of the possible prison term if he’s convicted.

Besides charges of pointing a gun at his girlfriend and threatening to kill her, he faces “certain persons” counts that govern felons caught with weapons, as well as drug offenses.

Bitzas, whose criminal history dates back 20 years, was free on bail at the time after being charged with assault on two Fort Lee police officers last July 27.

STORY / PHOTO: Mary K. Miraglia, CLIFFVIEW PILOT Courthouse Reporter



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