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Comptroller admits $17.8M fraud

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A Ronkonkoma woman has pleaded guilty in a $17.8 million wire fraud scheme, admitting she diverted federal tax money from Sacramento, Calif., county government employee paychecks, prosecutors said.

Kerry Ann Seaman, 35, former comptroller for the payroll processing company Ingentra HR Services Inc., of Hauppauge, faces sentencing March 25 in U.S. District Court, San Jose, Calif.

She agreed to pay restitution of $17,873,834 and to cooperate fully with government investigators. She signed the plea agreement Nov. 18.

In exchange prosecutors will recommend that she be sentenced on the low end of the guideline range, which has a maximum 25 year term.

Seaman admitted that she and Ingentra’s president, Albert Cipoletti, 61, of Northport, carried out the fraud together, siphoning cash from paychecks at  two private companies as well as from firefighters and other Sacramento County workers — 3,000 employees altogether, from 2005-2010.

Together they collected about $70 million that was supposed to go to the Internal Revenue Service, but they retained $17.8 million and sent the balance to the IRS, according to prosecutors, who say the two put the diverted money into Ingentra’s bank account to prop up the failing company.

The mail fraud conviction stems from Seaman’s admission that she and Cipoletti used interstate wires when e-mailing IRS tax forms to clients.

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