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Former Albany County Employee Pleads Guilty to Stealing Government Funds

ALBANY, NEW YORK – John T. Cox, age 61, of Schenectady, New York, pled guilty today to mail fraud and stealing money from a federally funded governmental agency. 

United States Attorney Carla B. Freedman; Craig L. Tremaroli, Special Agent in Charge of the Albany Field Office of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI); and Ryan T. Geach, Special Agent in Charge of the Department of Justice Office of the Inspector General (DOJ OIG) Northeast Region, made the announcement.

Cox admitted that between June 2017 and February 2023, while employed as a Budget Analyst in the Albany County Sheriff’s Office (ACSO), he stole $122,251.25 by issuing 16 fraudulent checks drawn on funds in the care of the ACSO, an agency that received more than $10,000 in federal funding each year during this time period.

Cox used the checks to pay himself directly or to pay down his line of credit.  Cox then tried to cover up his fraud by falsifying ACSO records to suggest that the funds were being used for legitimate purposes such as vehicle and equipment purchases. Cox stole some of the money from a Department of Justice program in which the federal government shares the proceeds of federal asset forfeitures with state and local law enforcement agencies.

Cox is scheduled to be sentenced on May 9, 2024 by United States District Judge Mae A. D’Agostino. The mail fraud conviction carries a maximum term of 20 years in prison and the federal program theft conviction carries a maximum term of 10 years in prison.  Both charges carry a fine of up to $250,000 and a term of supervised release of up to 3 years.  A defendant’s sentence is imposed by a judge based on the particular statutes the defendant is charged with violating, the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines, and other factors.  Cox has also agreed to pay $122,251.25 in restitution to the ACSO, and to a forfeiture money judgment in the amount of $113,301.25.

The FBI, DOJ OIG, and ACSO investigated the case with valuable assistance from the Money Laundering and Asset Recovery Section of the Department of Justice’s Criminal Division.  Assistant U.S. Attorney Joshua R. Rosenthal is prosecuting the case.

Updated January 11, 2024

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