Town Of Hempstead Councilman Pleads Guilty To Tax Evasion
Edward Ambrosino Agrees to Pay $700,000 in Restitution to His Former Employer
Earlier today, at the federal courthouse in Central Islip, Edward Ambrosino, a Town of Hempstead Councilman, pleaded guilty to tax evasion before United States District Judge Joanna Seybert. When sentenced, Ambrosino faces up to five years in prison, as well as restitution to the Internal Revenue Service and the New York State Department of Taxation and Finance for taxes owed for the tax years 2011 through 2014. In addition, Ambrosino agreed to pay restitution in the amount of $700,000.
Richard P. Donoghue, United States Attorney for the Eastern District of New York, William F. Sweeney, Jr., Assistant Director-in-Charge, Federal Bureau of Investigation, New York Field Office (FBI), and Jonathan D. Larsen, Acting Special Agent-in-Charge, Internal Revenue Service-Criminal Investigation, New York (IRS-CI), announced the guilty plea.
“Just like the people who put him in office, Ambrosino owed it to his fellow citizens to pay his fair share of taxes,” stated United States Attorney Donoghue. “This Office and our law enforcement partners are committed to holding accountable public officials who violate the law.”
Ambrosino was an attorney licensed to practice in New York State, specializing in economic and industrial development and financings, and formerly was “Of Counsel” at a law firm in Uniondale, New York. In addition, since March 2003, Ambrosino has served as a Councilman for the Town of Hempstead.
In 2011, Ambrosino incorporated Vanderbilt Consulting Group, Inc., and was the company’s sole shareholder. Ambrosino subsequently opened and controlled a bank account in the name of Vanderbilt, and was the sole authorized signer on that account. From 2013 through 2015, Ambrosino diverted more than $800,000 in legal fees from clients, including the Nassau County Industrial Development Agency and the Nassau County Local Economic Assistance Corporation, that he was required to provide to his law firm, and deposited them into the Vanderbilt bank account. Ambrosino neither admitted nor denied wrongdoing regarding this conduct, but as part of his guilty plea earlier today, he agreed to pay $700,000 in restitution to the law firm.
Ambrosino also evaded substantial income tax, and filed false and fraudulent corporate tax returns on behalf of Vanderbilt for the 2011, 2012 and 2013 tax years. Ambrosino evaded the assessment of income tax by claiming false and fraudulent business expense deductions, and failing to report funds he diverted from his former law firm. As a result, the IRS suffered a tax loss of approximately $254,628, which will be recouped by the IRS via restitution.
The government’s case is being handled by the Office’s Long Island Criminal Division. Assistant United States Attorneys Catherine M. Mirabile and Raymond A. Tierney are in charge of the prosecution.
North Valley Stream, New York
E.D.N.Y. Docket No. 17-CR-162 (JS)