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Former Toms River Schools Insurance Broker To Be Sentenced Today

Francis X. Gartland admits to mail fraud, conspiracy to defraud the IRS, and perjury.

Francis X. Gartland, the former insurance broker for the Toms River Regional School District, is scheduled to be sentenced this morning for his role in a scheme to pay bribes and other benefits to then-superintendent Michael J. Ritacco.

Gartland, who is scheduled to appear in federal court in Trenton, has admitted that while he served as the insurance broker for Toms River Regional Schools, he funneled bribes through a series of intermediaries.

The payments were in excess of $1 million total from 2002-2010, announced the U.S. Attorney's office.

Gartland, 71, pleaded guilty last spring before U.S. District Judge Joel A. Pisano in Trenton federal court to charges of mail fraud, conspiracy to defraud the IRS, and perjury.

U.S. Attorney Paul J. Fishman announced Gartland's plea. He said Gartland, while insurance broker for the Toms River Regional School District, admitted his role in a scheme to pay bribes and other benefits to the then-superintendent of schools to get and maintain a contract to provide insurance services for the district.

In the court documents and statements, Gartland admitted to his role with co-conspirators who paid $1 million to $2 million in bribes to Ritacco in exchange for inflated insurance contracts from 2002 to 2010, according to Fishman.

According to the U.S. Attorney's Office:

• Gartland admitted that in 2002, he, Ritacco, Cotroneo, and D’Alonzo agreed to have Ritacco approve a workers’ compensation insurance contract. That contract, between Gartland and the school district, had contract fees that would yield $500,000 to $600,000 per year in excess fees, which would be used to pay bribes and kickbacks to Ritacco.

• Gartland admitted his role in conspiring with Ritacco to defraud the IRS by hiding these bribes and other benefits that were paid to Ritacco, and to other individuals at Ritacco’s direction.

• Gartland admitted he and Ritacco, 65, used a series of shell companies and intermediaries to conceal the payments.

• Gartland admitted to filing fraudulent individual tax returns for tax years 2004 through 2007.

knarfie November 16, 2012 at 05:38 PM
Scumbags. And the kids could not get school buses for after school activities. Did not have the money. Throw away the key.
Mr. ? November 16, 2012 at 06:10 PM
Will he be convicted and make license plates along side Ritacco for all those Mercedes in certain towns involved with Gartland as broker?
Chief Wahoo November 16, 2012 at 06:35 PM
give him 100 years....and one year off for every crony he names !!!
Tony D November 16, 2012 at 09:20 PM
wonder if the law firm has crab cakes in their pants?
WMS826 November 19, 2012 at 01:50 AM
I guess he will die an inmate at this age and lack of medical care in Prison along with the stress. Hope it was worth it.
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