Attorney General Josh Shapiro Announces Felony Charges Against Former Scranton School District Fleet Manager
Statewide Grand Jury: Fleet Manager Billed School District for Work on Employees’ Personal Vehicles; Over-billed District by $53K to Put 114 Tires on 1 Garbage Truck
HARRISBURG — Attorney General Josh Shapiro today announced first-degree felony charges against the former fleet manager for the Scranton School District in connection with a long-running scheme that involved overbilling the district for work performed, billing for work done on the personal cars of district employees, and related offenses. The charges against the former district official are the result of a statewide grand jury investigation and presentment.
Daniel Sansky, 67, of Cortez Road, Jefferson Township, was today charged for crimes committed while he was fleet manager of the Scranton School District – between August 22, 2005 and August 13, 2017. The investigation revealed Sansky, through his auto body shop, Danny’s Auto Service, overbilled and double-billed for work performed on district vehicles. Sansky was charged with corrupt organizations, dealing in unlawful proceeds, criminal conspiracy and other felony offenses.
“This individual took advantage of the trust placed in him as a district official and allegedly defrauded the Scranton School District of hundreds of thousands of dollars,” Attorney General Josh Shapiro said. “To the people of Scranton who have been calling out for an investigation, and for more openness, transparency and honesty in their government – we heard you. Let me be very clear – this investigation is live, active and ongoing, and no one is above the law.”
Working jointly with the Pennsylvania State Police, investigators learned the former fleet manager, Sansky, conspired with an unnamed district employee to submit invoices that were never required to be reviewed or approved by the Scranton School District Chief Operations Officer. Invoices from 2009 through 2017 indicate that the Scranton School District was billed for at least $785,195 for work performed by Sansky. Prior to 2014, Sansky rarely provided itemized invoices. The district was not able to locate records for invoices before December 27, 2008.
Sansky also billed the district for work performed on the personal vehicles of at least a dozen district employees or their family members. A review of invoices showed 38 separate occasions when Sansky performed maintenance on the personal vehicles of the unnamed co-conspirator or one of his family members.
Records indicate that Sansky sold four vehicles belonging to the Scranton School District without proper authorization. It is unclear if the district received any compensation for the sales. Another vehicle belonging to the district was found in a secured rear lot at his auto-body shop during the execution of a search warrant in May. The vehicle, which was registered to the district, was not included on the list of 28 fleet vehicles maintained by the current fleet manager for the district.
Sansky routinely overbilled or double-billed for work, once claiming that Danny’s Auto Service changed 114 tires on one garbage truck over a 40-month period. In one of these instances, Sansky billed the district for tires on that truck on May 15, 2017 and May 18, 2017 – submitting separate invoices that he installed eight new tires – then replaced those same eight tires three days later and disposed of the old tires. After Sansky was replaced as fleet manager, the same truck only needed one new set of tires over a seven-month period.
During the execution of a search warrant at the auto-body shop owned by Sansky, no receipts were found for the purchase of these tires. Investigators believe that Sansky overbilled the district $53,215 for just these 114 tires.
Sansky and his wife, Mary Ann – who own Danny’s Auto Service on West Elm Street in Scranton – received health benefits through Scranton School District until May 1, 2017, even though Sansky was not an employee of the district in his role as fleet manager. Since the district was self-insured, it could legally offer insurance to sub-contractors.
More details on the findings of the 41st Statewide Investigating Grand Jury into theft, fraud and corruption occurring within the Scranton School District can be found here.
Sansky was taken into custody this morning by members of the Pennsylvania State Police and agents from the Office of Attorney General. The case will be prosecuted by Chief Deputy Attorney General Erik Olsen.
“As Attorney General, I take public corruption seriously wherever we find it,” Attorney General Shapiro said. “I will not allow any person in a public office to abuse their position of authority. I want to thank the Pennsylvania State Police for their assistance with this case. This investigation is ongoing and we’ll follow the facts and the evidence wherever they lead.”
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