Attorney General Cuomo And New York County District Attorney Morgenthau Secure Conviction Of School Bus Company For Forgery

ALBANY, NY (January 12, 2007) C Attorney General Andrew Cuomo and New York County District Attorney Robert Morgenthau today announced that a school transportation company and its owner, Patrick Florio, pled guilty to charges related to the use of forged inspection and registration stickers on school buses that were improperly registered and uninsured.

“This case was not just about forgery. It was about protecting children," Cuomo said. “Parents need to know that rules designed to ensure high-quality and safe bus drivers are enforced.  Unscrupulous school bus operators who flout these rules will be vigorously prosecuted." 

Patrick Florio of River Edge, NJ, was the sole owner and operator of a school bus transportation service operating as Frank's School Transportation at 346 East 119th Street, New York, NY.  Frank's School Transportation bussed children (nursery through grade 9) to and from their homes and schools in the Bronx and Manhattan.

The investigation first began when an NYPD traffic task force officer noticed a company bus with forged registration and inspection sticker.

On May 4, 2005, investigators from the New York State Department of Transportation (DOT) conducted an inspection of the company lot and discovered buses with forged inspection and registration stickers.  That day, New York City Police charged Florio with a number of forgery counts. Shortly thereafter, the DOT and the Department of Motor Vehicles closed down Frank's School Transportation after they discovered buses that were improperly registered and uninsured.

The offices of the District Attorney and Attorney General arranged for Frank's Transportation Company to plead guilty to NY Penal Law § 170.25, Criminal Possession of a Forged Instrument in the Second Degree, a Class D felony, and agree to pay $181,329 in restitution to victims. Florio also pled guilty to NY Penal Law §170.20, Criminal Possession of a Forged Instrument in the Third Degree. Florio had faced up to a year in jail but was sentenced Thursday, January 11, to a conditional discharge, the condition being that he abide by an Assurance of Discontinuance agreement with the Office of Attorney General to comply with all relevant laws, pay $181,000 in restitution, and not operate any bus transportation company without being properly bonded.