SEC charges Long Island town and elected official with municipal bond fraud

Remigio Civitarese
Novembre 22, 2017

The Securities and Exchange Commission charged the town of Oyster Bay and its highest elected official on Tuesday with allegedly defrauding municipal bond investors when it failed to disclose side deals with a local businessman who had contracts with the town.

"Oyster Bay and its most senior elected official concealed from its municipal investors that the town had gone to great lengths and taken on financial risk in an unusual decision to assist a vendor", Sanjay Wadhwa, senior associate director of the SEC's NY office, said in a statement. According to the complaint, this information was material to current and prospective investors due to the potential impact on the town's finances.

That businessman allegedly cultivated the relationship with the town, Venditto and other officials using gifts, bribes, kickbacks and political support.

The U.S. Attorney's Office for the Eastern District of NY has added 21 more counts to its corruption indictment against Nassau County Executive Edward Mangano and the former top elected official of a Long Island municipality in a kickback scheme involving a local restaurateur.

The additional counts in the criminal matter, which are all brought against Venditto, include securities fraud, wire fraud related to securities offerings and a related conspiracy charge.

Marc Agnifilo and Joshua Kirshner of Brafman & Associates represent Venditto.

Jonathan Pickhardt of Quinn Emanuel Urquhart & Sullivan, the defense attorney for the town listed on the SEC's statement, did not immediately respond to an emailed request for comment and a phone message left with his assistant.

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