Westchester County District Attorney Janet DiFiore announced that Barbara Cartagena (DOB 1/28/70) of 2039 Blackrock Avenue, Bronx, New York, plead guilty today to Grand Larceny in the Third Degree a class “D” Felony and Denise Alamo (DOB 4/26/55) of 218 Mile Square Road, Yonkers, New York plead guilty today to one count of Grand Larceny in the Fourth Degree, a class “E” Felony.
Both women were employed as payroll/accounting clerks by the New York State Department of Health at the Montrose Veteran’s Home where they committed their crimes.
The defendants were arrested in November, 2005, following a six-month long joint investigation by the District Attorney’s Public Integrity Bureau and the New York State Inspector General’s Office. Between November 2003 and March 2005, both women falsely claimed and received hundreds of hours of overtime pay totaling more than $11,000, which represented Department of Health payroll funds to which they were not entitled. An audit revealed certain irregularities in the payroll system at the Veteran’s Home, investigators were contacted and a criminal investigation began.
District Attorney Janet DiFiore said, “At any time, particularly in a time of war, for public employees, at a veteran’s home no less, to be exploiting the people who have sacrificed for our country is disgraceful. The money that they stole, would have been put to far better use in the rehabilitation and care of the people who gave of themselves rather than going to two people who only thought of themselves.”
Grand Larceny in the Third Degree is punishable by up to seven years in state prison and Grand Larceny in the Fourth Degree is punishable by up to four years in state prison.
Sentencing will be on August 30th. As part of their plea, both defendants are required to pay full restitution.
Assistant District Attorney Michael Hughes, Chief of the Public Integrity Bureau, is prosecuting the case.