ONLY ON CLIFFVIEW PILOT: A group of Albanian-Americans were playing cards at a Cliffside Park social club when three gunmen in ski masks burst in. Seven people, including two women, were roughed up before the trio – threatening to kill anyone who resisted — made off with watches, wallets, cellphones, jewelry and cash.
A Bergen County grand jury indicted three men last week on 21 counts in connection with last year’s Oct. 25 robbery.
Cliffside Park police rushed to the now-defunct Anderson Avenue social club, getting there moments after the robbers fled around 2 a.m.
At nearly the same time, Fairview police on a traffic-enforcement detail eight blocks away pulled over the getaway car – for a busted tail light.
The Fairview officers “got the radio alert of the robbery just as they stopped the car,” a law enforcement officer from Cliffside Park told CLIFFVIEW PILOT. “Ridgefield [police] immediately backed them up.”
Police said they found more than $3,500 in stolen valuables and cash, along with two of the weapons, in the vehicle.
They arrested all three men – two them ex-cons, another an Albanian citizen.
Despite extremely high bails, all remain free pending a trial.
Ex-con Besart Loga, 31 (above, middle), was released on $300,000 bail two weeks after the incident.
Eliot Xhafa, a 36-year-old Albanian citizen (above, left), was released two months later, on $200,000 bail.
Another convicted felon, 24-year-old Saul Mills (above, right), was released on $175,000 bail this past January.
The indictment charges them with pistol-whipping eight patrons, injuring two of them, as well as pointing weapons at and threatening to kill three of them during the robbery.
It also charges them with several counts of illegal possession of two semi-automatic firearms — a Glock 19 9mm handgun and an Alkar .32-caliber pistol.
STORY: Mary K. Miraglia, CLIFFVIEW PILOT Courthouse Reporter
MUGSHOTS: Courtesy BERGEN COUNTY SHERIFF