FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Tuesday, March 21, 2017
Former City Tax Auditor Indicted for Allegedly
Stealing over $243,000 from Sheriff’s Office Trust Accounts
Deposited Checks to Personal Account and Spent Money on Plastic Surgery,
High-End Fashion, Jewelry, Car Lease, Furniture and Other Expenses
Acting Brooklyn District Attorney Eric Gonzalez, together with New York City Department of Investigation Commissioner Mark G. Peters, today announced that a former tax auditor who was employed by the New York City Sheriff’s Office has been charged with grand larceny and related counts for allegedly stealing over $243,000 from Trust Accounts that were under her authority. After depositing checks to her personal accounts, she allegedly used the money on a host of extravagant personal expenses, including plastic surgery, travel, car leases, Louboutin products and Raymour & Flanigan furniture.
Acting District Attorney Gonzalez said, “What this defendant allegedly did was the ultimate betrayal of trust, taking money she was charged with safekeeping and spending it on her own lavish lifestyle. I will remain vigilant in prosecuting any form of public corruption.”
Commissioner Peters said, “As a City Tax Auditor this defendant was entrusted with the significant responsibility of accounting for and disbursing funds on behalf of the City. Instead, she is now charged with exploiting that access, stealing hundreds of thousands of dollars. DOI thanks the Brooklyn District Attorney’s Office for its continued partnership.”
The Acting District Attorney identified the defendant as Kasara Wilson, 30, of Bedford-Stuyvesant, Brooklyn. She was arraigned today before Brooklyn Supreme Court Justice James Sullivan on an indictment in which she is charged with second-degree grand larceny, third-degree attempted grand larceny and an administrative code violation for failure to account to comptroller. She was ordered held on a $20,000 bond and to return to court on March 29, 2017. The defendant faces up to 15 years in prison if convicted of the top count with which she is charged.
The Acting District Attorney said that the defendant worked as a City Tax Auditor at the New York City Sheriff’s Office, a division of the Department of Finance that maintains Trust Accounts for each of the city’s five boroughs. These accounts contain funds that the Sheriff holds in escrow for distribution after legal disputes are resolved. The defendant had access to the Trust Accounts and the authority to distribute funds to appropriate parties.
It is alleged that between July and December 2013, the defendant, without permission or authorization, deposited checks written from the Queens County Sheriff’s Trust Account in the amounts of $4,871, $7,800, $104,804 and $38,585 into her personal accounts with Municipal Credit Union and JP Morgan Chase. In September 2014, she allegedly deposited an $87,593 check from the Kings County Sheriff’s Trust Account into her personal account. The total of all five checks was $243,654. In May 2016, the defendant allegedly deposited a $19,686 check from the Richmond County Sheriff’s Trust Account into her Chase account, but the bank returned that check. The defendant was suspended and subsequently resigned in June 2016.
The investigation found that money from the accounts into which the checks were deposited was spent on a host of personal expenses, including a trip to Miami and the leasing of a Nissan vehicle that was later upgraded to an Infiniti. In addition, the defendant made dozens of purchases at various businesses, such as: $1950 at a plastic surgeon’s office, $1,600 at Christian Louboutin, over $3,500 at Diamond Hut Jewelry, over $400 at Gucci, over $1,500 at Michael Kors and over $9,500 at Raymour & Flanigan.
The Acting District Attorney thanks the New York City Sheriff’s Office for its assistance with the investigation.
The investigation was conducted by DOI’s Office of the Inspector General for the City Department of Finance, specifically Special Investigator Renee Hassel, a DOI attorney who has been assigned to the Brooklyn District Attorney’s Public Integrity Bureau, and Confidential Investigator Anthony Ginyard, under the supervision of Inspectors General Clinton Daggan and Chin Ho Cheng, Associate Commissioner Susan Lambiase, Deputy Commissioner/Chief of Investigations Michael Carroll, and First Deputy Commissioner Lesley Brovner.
The case is being prosecuted by Senior Assistant District Attorney Sara Walshe and Assistant District Attorney Katherine Zdrojeski of the District Attorney’s Public Integrity Bureau, with the assistance of Financial Investigator Vincent Jones, under the supervision of Assistant District Attorney Michael Spanakos, Bureau Chief, and the overall supervision of Executive Assistant District Attorney William E. Schaeffer, Chief of the District Attorney’s Investigations Division and Assistant District Attorney Patricia McNeill, Deputy Chief.
An indictment is an accusatory instrument and not proof of a defendant’s guilt.