Sunday, February 7, 2010

Former New Jersey Restaurant Executive Pleads Guilty In $1 Million Kickback Scheme

Russell D'Anton, 49, of Manasquan, New Jersey, pleaded guilty Thursday to conspiracy to commit mail fraud and tax evasion charges wherein he partook in a kickback scheme involving vendors with Charlie Brown's Steakhouse restaurant chain for which he had served as president and CEO. D'Anton admitted that, between 1998 and 2008, he and Michael Mulligan, 51, of West Milford, New Jersey, a former company vice president, rewarded contracts for Charlie Brown's to companies that agreed to give kickbacks. In total, those payments amounted to more than $1 million in cash, appliances, Broadway tickets, luxury trips and other personal items. Mulligan had previously plead guilty to conspiracy to commit mail fraud and tax evasion. D'Anton faces up to 25 years in prison and $500,000 in fines upon his sentencing, which is scheduled for May 17, 2010.

Read the story here and here.

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