A.G. Schneiderman, I.G. Leahy Scott And OGS Commissioner Destito Announce Arrest Of State Employee Charged With Using Government Credit Card For Personal Use

News from Attorney General Eric T. Schneiderman

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
March 7, 2017

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A.G. SCHNEIDERMAN, I.G. LEAHY SCOTT AND OGS COMMISSIONER DESTITO ANNOUNCE ARREST OF STATE EMPLOYEE CHARGED WITH USING GOVERNMENT CREDIT CARD FOR PERSONAL USE

Daniel Sequin, a Mechanic Employed by OGS, Allegedly Used State Credit Card to Purchase Over $2K Worth of Car Parts

Schneiderman: We Will Continue to Root Out and Prosecute Public Employees Who Defraud the System

ALBANY – Attorney General Eric T. Schneiderman and New York State Inspector General Catherine Leahy Scott announced today the arrest and arraignment of Daniel Sequin, a Motor Equipment Mechanic employed by the New York State Office of General Services (OGS).  Sequin worked in the OGS Satellite Garage located beneath the Empire State Plaza in Albany, New York. The Felony Complaint filed with the Court today accuses Sequin of illegally using his government credit card to purchase over $2,000 worth of tires and car parts for his personal use and subsequently attempting to conceal his larcenies from OGS auditors. He faces multiple charges, including grand larceny, criminal possession of a forged instrument, tampering with physical evidence, and offering a false instrument for filing. If convicted, Sequin faces up to seven years in prison.

“Public employees who exploit the privileges of their position do so at the expense of hardworking taxpayers, and erode trust in our government,” said Attorney General Schneiderman. “I will continue working to root out and fully prosecute public employees who defraud the system.”

An investigation by the Attorney General and Inspector General allegedly revealed that from November 2014 to February 2015, Sequin used his State credit card to purchase $2,561 worth of tires and car parts for himself, another OGS employee, and an OGS employee’s wife. According to the Felony Complaint, on March 10, 2015, OGS auditors contacted Sequin and told him they were conducting a random physical audit of all the tires in the garage at 11:00 a.m. that day. In response, Sequin asked to move the audit to 12:00 p.m. The auditors agreed and during the hour interval, Sequin gave another OGS employee money and told him to buy six additional tires and quickly bring them back to the garage. When the auditors arrived, they saw the six new tires. After the auditors left, however, Sequin allegedly told the OGS employee to return the tires back to the store.

“As alleged, the defendant shamelessly used his government position and resources to steal from taxpayers and support an illicit car parts supply line for friends and family,” said Inspector General Leahy Scott. “I will continue to use my office and the resources at my disposal to vigorously pursue anybody who violates the public trust and steals from taxpayers.” 

The documents filed with the Court allege that Sequin also altered multiple tire receipts to conceal the identifying vehicle information so that an OGS auditor would not know that the tires were purchased for non-State vehicles.

Today, Sequin was arraigned before Judge Gary F. Stiglemeier in Albany City Court – Criminal Part. He was released on his own recognizance to appear next Monday for a preliminary hearing. He faces one count of grand larceny in the 4th degree in violation of P.L. § 155.30, a class E felony; one count of tampering with physical evidence in violation of P.L. § 215.40, a class E felony; two counts of offering a false instrument for filing in the 1st degree in violation of P.L. § 175.35, a class E felony; and two counts of criminal possession of a forged instrument in violation of P.L. § 170.25, a class D Felony. 

"OGS would like to thank the IG and AG for their responsiveness and professionalism after we brought this matter to their attention,” Office of General Services Commissioner RoAnn Destito said. “We have no tolerance for the misuse of state funds and are pleased that it has been resolved. "

The Attorney General’s Office thanks the New York State Office of General Services for bringing this matter to their attention, and both OGS and the Inspector General’s office for their invaluable assistance in the investigation of these alleged crimes.

The charges are merely accusations, and the defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty in a court of law.

This matter was investigated by Investigator Dale Richter from the Inspector General’s Division of Investigations, under the supervision of Deputy Chief of Investigations Dan Walsh, Chief of Investigations Sherry Amarel, Investigative Counsel James Breen and Deputy Inspector General Jim Davis, and Investigator Mark Spencer from the Attorney General’s Investigations Division. Antoine Karam is the Deputy Chief Investigator of the Attorney General’s Investigations Division, which is led by Chief Dominick Zarrella. 

Assistant Attorney General Daniel Bajger and Assistant Attorney General Christopher Baynes of the Public Integrity Bureau are prosecuting the case with assistance from Legal Support Analyst Sara Pogorzelski under the supervision of Public Integrity Bureau Chief Daniel Cort and Deputy Bureau Chief Stacy Aronowitz.