Comptroller Thomas P. DiNapoli and Attorney General Eric T. Schneiderman today announced the arrests of three contractors for conspiring to defraud the state of over $200,000 by submitting false invoices over a two year period for HVAC equipment, supplies and labor.
“These vendors shamelessly falsified numerous invoices to inflate their bills to the state in an effort to defraud the taxpayers of over $200,000,” DiNapoli said. ”My office will continue to monitor public expenditures, investigate corruption, and partner with law enforcement to ensure those who try to rip off the state are caught and punished. I thank Attorney General Schneiderman for his continued work as part of our joint task force to root out corruption in New York.”
“These greedy contractors sought to profit by defrauding the state, and now they are being held accountable,” Attorney General Eric T. Schneiderman said. “Comptroller DiNapoli and I will remain vigilant to ensure that New York’s hard-working taxpayers don’t get fleeced by corrupt contractors.”
Attorney General Schneiderman charged Charles Angelillo, Jr., 40, and his wife, Carol Angelillo, 39, owner and office manager of Classic Air Conditioning and Heating of Eastport, and Anthony Cuccinello, 46, owner of AM/PM Supply Corporation of Maspeth, with falsifying business records for a series of emergency contracts with the state Office of General Services from 2010 to 2012 on state contracts for heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) equipment, supplies and labor.
All three were charged with multiple felonies including grand larceny in the second degree, falsifying business records and other charges. They were arraigned in Suffolk County Criminal Court on March 25 and released on their own recognizance. They are due back in court May 28.
The investigation revealed that almost immediately after receiving their first contract, the Angelillos started submitting false bills to the state for equipment they never purchased. Later, they forged invoices to double or triple the amount the state owed them. In 2011, the Angelillos allegedly enlisted Cuccinello to join the scheme. Together, the three defendants attempted to deceive the state into paying more than $200,000 in bloated payments.
The arrests are the latest in the combined efforts of the Comptroller and Attorney General’s Joint Task Force on Public Integrity which resulted in more than 30 public corruption arrests last year alone and more than $5 million in restitution.
The charges against the defendants are allegations. All defendants are presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty in a court of law.
Anyone with additional information on this matter or any other suspected public corruption is encouraged to contact the State Comptroller’s office by calling the toll-free fraud hotline at 1-888-672-4555; filing a complaint online at [email protected]; or mailing a complaint to: Office of the State Comptroller Investigations Unit, 110 State Street, 14th floor, Albany, NY 12236 or the Attorney General’s Office at 1-800-996-4630.