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Press Release

Former Comptroller Of Poughkeepsie Companies Sentenced In White Plains Federal Court For Multimillion-Dollar Fraud

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Southern District of New York

Geoffrey S. Berman, the United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York, announced today that MARK CINA, a former comptroller of two Poughkeepsie companies, was sentenced to 41 months in prison for mail fraud and tax evasion.  CINA pled guilty on April 11, 2018, before U.S. District Judge Cathy Seibel, who imposed today’s sentence. 

U.S. Attorney Geoffrey S. Berman stated:  “Mark Cina embezzled millions of dollars to line his pockets at the great expense and suffering of his trusting employer, a Hudson Valley entrepreneur and small businessman.  Theft like the defendant’s is intolerable, and today’s sentencing shows that an employee’s choice to engage in such a crime is a choice to go to prison.”

As set forth in the Complaint and Information in the case, other court filings, and during court proceedings:

During all times relevant to the case, two manufacturing companies were in operation, with plants located in the Town of Poughkeepsie (“Company-1” and “Company-2,” collectively the “Companies”).  Company-1 designed and manufactured solar energy products such as solar-powered roof shingles.  Company-1’s work included, for example, a solar-powered ring of lights encircling the top of MetLife Stadium, in New Jersey.  Company-2 fabricated molded plastic.

The Companies were founded by an entrepreneur (“Victim-1”).  Victim-1 was the primary investor in, and owner of, the Companies. 

In 2008, Victim-1 hired CINA as a part-time bookkeeper for Company-1.  In 2010, CINA became employed full-time for the Companies as comptroller.  In his position, CINA was responsible for the day-to-day financial operations of the Companies.  CINA had authority to sign checks for the Companies and to carry and use the Companies’ credit cards and ATM cards.  CINA remained so employed until August 2015, when he was terminated.

In September 2015, Victim-1 appeared at a New York State Police barracks in Dutchess County.  Victim-1 reported, in part and substance, that a former employee of the Companies had stolen company funds.  Thereafter, the New York State Police commenced an investigation, which federal law enforcement officers later joined.  As summarized in the Complaint, the investigation yielded voluminous evidence showing that CINA had defrauded Victim-1, via the Companies, of millions of dollars over the course of at least seven years.  CINA did so by, among other things, using the Companies’ funds for himself to gamble, pay his rent, drive rental cars, dine out, get his car washed, bail out an arrestee, and, in one instance, pay a phone charge for an inmate’s call.

According to, among other things, business and financial records obtained during the criminal investigation, and a forensic report prepared by an accounting firm, CINA made the following disbursements of the Companies’ funds, from 2009 through 2015, which were not authorized, and which had no apparent or recorded business purpose:

  • Payments to a mini-mart (approximately $457,000)
  • Payments to a gas station (approximately $180,000)
  • Payment of CINA’s rent (approximately $25,000)
  • Payment of CINA’s personal credit card bills (approximately $125,000)
  • Checks payable to CINA (non-payroll) (approximately $599,000)
  • Checks payable to cash (approximately $282,000)
  • Cash withdrawals (approximately $825,000)
  • Additional unauthorized charges (including charges to pharmacies, medical and dental facilities, a rental car company, a car wash facility, an inmate phone service, and for purported loans from family members of CINA)

*                *                *

In addition to the prison term, CINA, 56, of Poughkeepsie, New York, ordered to pay restitution in the total amount $3,385,665 and forfeiture in the total amount $2,548,820.

Mr. Berman praised the outstanding investigative efforts of the United States Postal Inspection Service, the New York State Police, the Internal Revenue Service, Criminal Investigation, and the Office’s Special Agents.  He also thanked the Dutchess County District Attorney’s Office for their assistance. 

The case is being handled by the Office’s White Plains Division.  Assistant U.S. Attorneys Kathryn Martin and Benjamin Allee are in charge of the prosecution.

Updated September 20, 2018

Financial Fraud
Press Release Number: 18-322