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Smoke Shop Theft leads to three gunpoint kidnappings

by WayneTimes.com
March 11, 2023

When the High Vibes smoke shop on Route 31/Main Street in Newark was burglarized sometime between Friday night (3/3) and Saturday morning (3/4) the smoke shop owners decided to not report it to police.

Instead Wadhah Faud Alsaidi, age 22, Abdullah Y. Negm, age 20 and Joseph T. Cook, age 18, all residing at a rental property at 1320 Sleight Road in the Town of Arcadia decided to take matters into their own hands.

The three operators believed a former employee, Jonathan Lang, age 18, of Route 14 in Sodus was behind the theft of $60,000 in marijuana and marijuana products.

Alsaidi and Negm drove to Lang’s residence and took him by gunpoint and learned the identities of three other juveniles involved in the burglary. With Lang in tow, they proceeded to pick up one 17 year-old on Ridge Road in Sodus and a third 17 year-old on Main Street in the Village of Sodus.

Lang and the two juveniles were brought back to the smoke shop after their houses were searched. They were then joined by Cook,  searching for the fourth juvenile in Seneca Falls. Failing to find the fourth burglary participant, the one holding the majority of the stolen marijuana, they returned to the smoke shop.

Eventually Lang and the two juveniles they kidnapped by gunpoint were released.

Alsaidi and Negm decided to flee the country and had bought tickets to Saudi Arabia, but were intercepted by State Police Investigators at  New York City’s JFK Airport and transferred to Investigators out of Lyons. By then, Cook was already in custody. 

Alsaidi, Negm and Cook were each charged with Felonies Burglary in the First Degree, Robbery in the First Degree and Kidnapping in the Second Degree. Alsaidi, Negm were remanded to the Wayne County Jail on No Bail and Cook on $50,000 cash/$200,000 bond.

The investigation is continuing. State Police did not specify how much marijuana product was recovered. To date, no charges have been filed in the theft from the smoke shop, since the that alleged crime has not been reported to police.

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