JURY CONVICTS NEW YORK MAN OF DEFENSE CONTRACT FRAUD
MONDAY, AUGUST 20, 2012
Public Affairs Officer
COLUMBUS – A United States District Court jury convicted Jerome Rabinowitz, 69, of Great Neck, New York of mail and wire fraud, false claims and money laundering for selling nonconforming parts to the Department of Defense under a contract to supply electronic components. According to the Indictment, these items are used in the Navy Nuclear Reactors Program, on military aircraft, and on weapons systems for submarines.
Carter M. Stewart, United States Attorney for the Southern District of Ohio, and Jeffrey Arsenault, Acting Special Agent in Charge, Defense Criminal Investigative Service (DCIS), Central Field Office, announced the verdict reached on August 17 which was returned following a nine-day trial that began on August 6 before U.S. District Judge Gregory L. Frost.
According to court testimony, Rabinowitz owned J&W Technologies, LLC, and did business under the name of Jerry Roth. The company had direct and indirect contracts awarded from 2006 through 2009 to provide semiconductors, microcircuits, and transistors to the Department of Defense. The parts are considered critical application items, meaning they are essential to weapon system performance or operation, or the preservation of life or safety of operating personnel.
The contracts called for specific parts made by specific manufacturers during a given timeframe. Rabinowitz sent the Defense Department parts including military surplus parts and some items manufactured as long ago as 1967 and the 1970s. Court testimony also alleged that Rabinowitz provided forged documents to the Department of Defense to make it appear as though he bought the parts from the correct manufacturers. The Defense Finance and Accounting Service, located in Columbus, paid Rabinowitz based on the false representations he made to the government.
The jury convicted Rabinowitz of 25 counts of mail fraud, 9 counts of wire fraud, 3 counts of money laundering and 2 counts of making false claims to the government. He faces up to 20 years in prison for each of the mail and wire fraud convictions, up to 10 years for the money laundering counts and up to 5 years for each of the false claims counts. Every count carries with it a maximum fine of $250,000.00.
The jury also found that Rabinowitz should forfeit $354,877.80, which represents some of the loss to the Department of Defense from the wire fraud and the mail fraud, and a 5.29 carat diamond ring Defendant bought with some of the proceeds (comingled with other monies) of the money laundering.
Judge Frost remanded Rabinowitz to the custody of the U.S. Marshals until sentencing.
“When the safety of military personnel is at stake, we must assure that the items and equipment they receive meet rigid specifications,” Stewart said. “I want to commend the efforts by the DCIS special agent who investigated the case, the Defense Logistics Agency Land and Maritime in Columbus, Ohio, and Assistant U.S. Attorney J. Michael Marous, who prosecuted the case.”