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Feds: Great Neck man gets 4 years in defense contract fraud

A Great Neck man was sentenced to 4 years in prison Friday for selling outdated electronic parts to the Department of Defense, including surplus items and some manufactured as long ago as 1967, federal prosecutors said.

Jerome Rabinowitz, 69, was sentenced in U.S. District Court in Columbus, Ohio, for selling the parts to the U.S. Navy for its nuclear reactors program, military aircraft and submarine weapons systems.

Rabinowitz, who owned J&W Technologies Llc and did business under the name of Jerry Roth, also was fined $25,000 and ordered to forfeit $354,877.80, which represents some of the loss by the Department of Defense, according to a news release from the office of Carter M. Stewart, U.S. attorney for the Southern District of Ohio.

Jeffrey Arsenault, acting special agent in charge in the Defense Criminal Investigative Service of the Defense Department, and Stewart's office announced the sentence imposed by U.S. District Judge Gregory L. Frost.

Frost also barred Rabinowitz from directly or indirectly receiving contracts from the Defense Department and ordered him to forfeit a 5.29-carat diamond ring purchased with some of the proceeds from the transactions. Rabinowitz also was ordered to pay restitution of $492,024.53 to the Defense Department.

"When the safety of military personnel is at stake, we must assure that the items and equipment they receive meet rigid specifications," Stewart said.

A jury convicted Rabinowitz in August of 25 counts of mail fraud, nine counts of wire fraud, three counts of money laundering and two counts of making false claims to the government. Rabinowitz has been in custody since the verdict was announced.

Prosecutors said Rabinowitz failed to meet the condition of the contracts, which called for specific parts made by specific manufacturers during a given time frame. Some parts were manufactured in the 1970s and as long ago as 1967, they said.

Evidence presented during the trial showed that Rabinowitz provided forged documents to the Department of Defense to make it appear as though he bought the parts from the correct manufacturers, the news release said.

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