Massachusetts Police Officer Indicted In $36M Fraud Scheme
Some nefarious goings-on happening in the eastern part of the Commonwealth perpetrated by someone who's supposed to be on the side of good, according to the U.S. District Attorney's Office and the Department of Justice.
According to the DOJ, a Stoneham, Massachusetts police officer and his brother have been indicted for allegedly paying tens of thousands of dollars in weekly cash bribes to a Mass Save vendor company employee.
Stoneham Police Officer, Joseph Ponzo, 48-years-old, and his brother, 47-year-old Christopher Ponzo of North Reading, were indicted by a federal grand jury on one count of wire fraud conspiracy and 12 counts of wire fraud.
In a media statement from the Department of Justice and the U.S. Attorney's Office:
Joseph Ponzo, a full-time Stoneham Police Officer, and his brother, Christopher Ponzo, an owner of an electrical contracting company, conspired to bribe an associate employed by a Mass Save lead vendor company (Company A) in exchange for the associate’s assistance in procuring Mass Save contracts that netted the Ponzos millions of dollars in Mass Save contracts.
Between the two brothers, they allegedly collected approximately $36 million in funds that were fraudulently obtained. In addition to cash bribes, the two were also accused of using kickbacks and offering other benefits including a John Deere tractor, home bathroom fixtures, and free electrical work, among other things.
Mass Save is a public-private partnership sponsored by various gas and electric utility companies that disburses these energy efficiency funds by funding energy conservation projects for consumers.
According to the DOJ statement, the charges of wire fraud conspiracy and wire fraud each provide for a sentence of up to 20 years in prison, up to three years of supervised release, and a fine of up to $250,000.
For more on the story, visit the Department Of Justice's website here.