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Prostitute charged after death of chef Andrea Zamperoni, officials say

Angelina Barini, 41, was charged in a federal criminal complaint with conspiring to distribute narcotics such as fentanyl.

Chef Andrea Zamperoni.

Chef Andrea Zamperoni. Photo Credit: NYPD

A prostitute from Queens was charged Monday in connection with the death of Andrea Zamperoni, the head chef of Manhattan's Cipriani Dolci restaurant, and two other men, officials said.

Angelina Barini, 41, who investigators said had a lengthy criminal record for prostitution, petit larceny, drug possession and other crimes, was charged in a federal criminal complaint with conspiring to distribute narcotics such as fentanyl. Officials believe the drugs contributed to the deaths of three of Barini's clients, including Zamperoni, 33, a citizen of Italy.

Barini, of Rego Park, was ordered held without bail after a court appearance late Monday, said a spokesman for U.S. Attorney's Office for the Eastern District, based in Brooklyn.

Zamperoni's co-workers at the popular Manhattan restaurant reported him missing Aug. 21. The criminal complaint referenced Zamperoni as "John Doe-3" and said police found his body at about 8:30 p.m. at the Kamway Lodge in Elmhurst on the same day workers reported him missing. Zamperoni’s body was found inside a garbage can, wrapped in bed linens with one of his feet sticking out of the can, the complaint said.

Police reported the smell of a decomposing body coming from the room where they found Zamperoni, with incense apparently being used to mask the odor.

The medical examiner said Monday that the cause of Zamperoni’s death was pending. According to the complaint, Barini told police that after she hooked up with Zamperoni on Aug. 18, they went to the lodge and she later discovered he wouldn't wake up and was bleeding from his nose and mouth.

After first denying that she or her pimp gave Zamperoni drugs, Barini later said the pimp gave him liquid ecstasy, the complaint stated.  Barini also told police she would sometimes give her clients drugs provided by her pimp, who was not identified in the complaint.

“Barini stated in sum and substance and in part that she did not do it, her pimp made her do it and it was not her,” the complaint stated.

A search of the Kamway Lodge by police uncovered Zamperoni’s American Express card, the complaint said, also noting that Barini and her pimp had discussed cutting up the chef’s body, although it was found with no external trauma.

The complaint outlined that the bodies of the two other men, identified as "John Doe-1" and "John Doe-2," were discovered in hotel rooms in Queens on July 4 and July 11 respectively, and autopsies found drugs and alcohol in their systems.


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