Owner of Trash Company Pleads Guilty to Fraud
BOSTON – The owner of a trash company pleaded guilty today in federal court in Boston in connection with defrauding the operator of the Fall River Landfill out of approximately $473,000 in disposal fees.
Stephen P. Aguiar, Jr., 47, of Westport, pleaded guilty to three counts of mail fraud. U.S. District Court Judge F. Dennis Saylor IV scheduled sentencing for July 17, 2017.
Aguiar was one of the owners and operators of Cleanway Disposal & Recycling, Inc., a trash removal and recycling company, and JS Aguiar Enterprises, Inc., a construction and equipment rental company, which were both located in Westport. Aguiar contracted with the company operating the Fall River Landfill to dispose of trash collected from his private clients in Fall River for one rate, and to dispose of trash collected from his private clients outside of Fall River for a higher rate. Aguiar also contracted with the City of Fall River to collect trash from the Fall River Housing Authority (FRHA) and dispose of the trash at the landfill. The company operating the landfill allowed the City of Fall River to dispose of trash collected from FRHA properties at no charge. Between 2009 and 2014, Aguiar misrepresented the origin of a significant portion of the trash he disposed at the landfill. Aguiar claimed he was disposing trash from the FRHA, when in fact he was disposing trash collected from his private clients, thereby defrauding Fall River Landfill of approximately $473,000 in revenue.
The charging statute provides for a sentence of no greater than 20 years in prison, three years of supervised release, a fine of $250,000, restitution and forfeiture. Actual sentences for federal crimes are typically less than the maximum penalties. Sentences are imposed by a federal district court judge based upon the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and other statutory factors.
Acting United States Attorney William D. Weinreb; Harold H. Shaw, Special Agent in Charge of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Boston Field Division; Massachusetts Inspector General Glenn A. Cunha; and Christina Scaringi, Special Agent in Charge of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, Office of the Inspector General, Northeast Regional Office made the announcement today. Assistant U.S. Attorney Kristina E. Barclay of Weinreb’s Public Corruption Unit is prosecuting the case.