Beverly Augello [left], and her ex-husband, Ferdinand Augello, have both been arrested in April Kauffman’s 2012 death.
A Florida Keys woman was charged last week in relation to the 2012 slaying of a New Jersey radio host, making her the third person to be arrested in the gang and drug-related murder plot, officials said.April Kauffman, a Jersey Shore radio talk show personality, was shot and killed at her Linwood, N.J., home on May 10, 2012. For years, her death remained a mystery, but last week prosecutors in Atlantic City charged her husband, Dr. James Kauffman, with hiring a hitman to have her killed after she found out that he was running a drug ring out of his doctor’s office involving the Pagans Outlaw Motorcycle Gang.
April’s husband Dr. James Kauffman was taken into custody June 13, 2017 after prosecutors said he bought a hit on his wife to protect his illegal drugs distribution business
Dr. James Kauffman at his arraignment in June
Ferdinand Augello, a member of the criminal Pagans gang, was also charged last week after prosecutors said he hired a hitman on Kauffman’s behalf. On Tuesday, cops in Summerland Key, Fla., revealed that Augello’s ex-wife, Beverly Augello, had been arrested on an “out of county warrant” and was awaiting extradition to New Jersey.
“The description of the warrant just refers to drug charges and a murder,” Becky Herrin, a spokeswoman for the Monroe County sheriff’s office said.
According to flkeysnews that she was arrested on suspicion that she picked up payout for the hit. The report states that 47-year-old Beverly Augello, a Summerland Key artist was arrested last week after prosecutors in Atlantic City, N.J. said she is connected to the 2012 murder of a NJ radio DJ April Kaufman
The execution of Kaufman allegedly, was ordered by the her doctor husband, James Kaufman when she threatened to expose his pill mill-dealing ring.
In the final chapter of the investigations, Beverly Augello, a native of Orange, N.J. now living in the Florida Keys, is accused of picking up the payment for her ex-husband, Ferdinand Augello, a Pagans motorcycle club member who was arrested for recruiting a hitman.
She was arrested January 9 and charged with first-degree racketeering. The arrest warrant’s notes read, “illegal distribution of narcotics and a murder,” according to the Monroe County Sheriff’s Office.
Tuesday, Augello remained locked up without bond at the Stock Island Detention Center awaiting extradition to New Jersey.
April Kauffman was found shot to death in 2012 in her Linwood, N.J., home
Prosecutors allege that Dr. James Kauffman, 69, would rather have his wife murdered than go through an acrimonious divorce, prosecutors said.
“Ultimately, James Kauffman made the decision to kill April Kauffman and, based on information and belief, Kauffman told Augello that April threatened to expose the illegal [oxycontin] distribution network they had established,” according to Atlantic City Prosecutor Damon G. Tyner.
Dr. Kauffman made sure his wife was shot dead to keep her from reporting the prescription pill dealing arrangement he allegedly had with the Pagans.
James Kauffman allegedly gave the murder fund to Ferdinand Augello,[left] who then hired Francis Mullholland [right], for the hit. Mullholland has since died while Augello is on trial
Eight people have been arrested and charged with taking part in the murder and also conspiracy and racketeering: James Kauffman and Ferdinand Augello, 61, who is Beverly Augello’s ex, are charged with pulling off the murder.
Ferdinand Augello is also charged with conspiracy to murder James Kauffman, although prosecutors offered no details on the plot.
“Prior to 2011, James Kauffman and Ferdinand Augello had a relationship which centered on James Kauffman’s medical practice,” prosecutors said.
“In the summer of 2011, James Kauffman solicited Ferdinand Augello to murder Kauffman’s wife, April Kauffman. This appears to be for numerous reasons largely centered on April Kauffman’s threats of divorce. James Kauffman stated he would sooner kill April than grant the divorce and lose ‘half his empire.’”
When the hit was executed, prosecutors say, April Kauffman was fatally shot twice inside her Linwood, N.J. home on May 10, 2012.
The investigations in the case led to a connection to the Florida Keys.
The alleged hitman, Francis Mullholland, had said he received approximately $20,000 in cash for his role, though this number has been speculated at being higher, Tyner’s office said.
Mullholland has since died.
James and April Kaufman before he had her killed to protect his drug-dealing ring
The murder payment was picked up on the day of the murder by Beverly Augello, along with additional prescriptions that were used to obtain drugs that day and the money was given to Ferdinand Augello, prosecutors said.
Until the appointment of Damon Tyner as Atlantic City prosecutor in March 2017, the investigation had stalled. Tyner’s office decided to put the pieces of the scheme together. When Tyner ordered his staff to identify homicides that could be solved, the April Kauffman murder was one of those picked.
The investigation was helped along by feds investigating pill mills and some other illegal drug operations who “believed at the time Dr. Kauffman had some involvement,” Tyner said.
Investigators said James Kauffman had an arrangement with certain members of the Pagan gang in which he would give free prescriptions for oxycontin to whoever they sent his way. Those people would either fill them or sell them. For his part, Ferdinand Augello allegedly received $1,000 per prescription or a predetermined number of pills once a prescription was filled.
The flkeysnews reports prosecutors confirming that after the murder of April Kaufman, the drug enterprise continued to flourish five additional years: “Those receiving pills did change during that time; however, every person to be involved in the drug enterprise was a Pagan, former Pagan or an associate of a Pagan. The enterprise folded in June of 2017 with the arrest of James Kauffman.”
When the pill mill was busted, 69-year-old Dr. James Kauffman, faced racketeering and drug dealing charges due to his arrangement with the Pagans gang.
Prosecutors claim he illegally provided gang members with Oxycontin pills with the purpose to sell them. Those charges were in addition to murder charges in the death of his wife.
April Kauffman apparently signed her death warrant when she asked her husband for a divorce after she found out about his pill-mill operation.
James Kauffman [in orange regulation uniform] appears in court with attorney Ed Jacobs
The prospect of a divorce got Kauffman worried about “losing his financial empire,” Atlantic County prosecutor Damon Tyner said at a press conference last Tuesday.
“This provided motivation for James Kauffman to have his wife killed,” the prosecutor added.
Francis Mulholland, the person who was paid to kill April Kauffman, died in 2013 after an accidental overdose, according to Tyner.
Kauffman remains in custody at the Atlantic County Justice Facility, where he has been detained since June 13, 2017