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Truth, fiction equally strange for man who helped stage his own phony death after feds said his estranged wife paid hit man to whack him


NYPD Officer Valerie Cincinelli has been charged with enlisting her boyfriend to find a hitman who could murder her estranged spouse, Isaiah Carvalho (pictured), and her boyfriend's daughter. (HANDOUT)

The target of a murder-for-hire plot fought back tears while recounting his role in foiling the cold-blooded scheme feds say was arranged by his NYPD cop wife

“I didn’t want to believe it, but apparently it’s true,” said an emotional Isaiah Carvalho, 32, during a Wednesday appearance on ABC’s “Good Morning America.”

The harsh reality of his estranged spouse’s alleged murderous plan hit Carvalho as he helped the FBI stage his own violent demise last Friday, slumping as if lifeless inside his parked car while authorities spread broken glass across the floor and his “corpse.”

“They ended up taking me to an undisclosed location and had me fake my own death and took pictures of it,” he said. “The craziest thing I ever had to experience in my life. ... [They] had me hunch over in the passenger seat.”

The FBI texted the Carvalho photo to John DiRubba — the boyfriend of NYPD Officer Valerie Cincinelli — and he showed it to her as “proof” of her husband’s slaying, according to court papers.

DiRubba, a mob wannabe who claimed he was involved in organized crime, was actually working as an informant for the feds and wore a wire against Cincinelli.

The entire experience, from the betrayal after four years of marriage to the faked death to Cincinelli’s shocking arrest, left Carvalho’s head spinning.

“I was shocked,” he told ABC. “I was taken aback by the whole thing. I didn’t know how to react.”

Carvalho said he had only one question to ask Cincinelli: “Why?”

The 34-year-old cop remains locked up with no bail in the murder-for-hire plot. She is a mother of two and Carvalho is the father of the youngest child.

NYPD Chief of Department Terence Monahan said the arrest of an active city cop was a chilling development.

“It’s difficult to hear,” he said Wednesday. “It’s not something we expect of our police officers. Obviously we want to look at anything we can do to make the hiring process better, anything that we can catch."