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Sept. 4, 2013 -- Westchester County District Attorney Janet DiFiore announced that Lionel Thomas (DOB 03/15/77) of 421 North Broadway, Yonkers, New York plead guilty as charged today to:

  • one count of Scheme to Defraud in the First Degree, a class "E" Felony.

Between Oct. 31, 2012 and Nov. 29, 2012, the defendant, a former employee of the City of Yonkers Taxation and Finance Department, located at 40 South Broadway in Yonkers, engaged in a scheme defrauding a number of tax payers of the City of Yonkers.

On six separate occasions, the defendant demanded and received cash "fees" for processing legitimate tax payments from Yonkers' residents.

The defendant did not have the authority to charge the "fees" and withheld the "fees" from the City of Yonkers.

Specifically, from Oct. 31, 2012 to Nov. 29, 2012, the defendant fraudulently induced six taxpayers to pay him a total of $1,970.00 in surcharges for "late fees" on the victims' taxes, when in fact no such late fees were properly chargeable.

After the victim would pay the "fee" in cash, the defendant would issue an official looking "receipt" for the money.

The scheme unraveled when one of the victims thought the cash "fee" to be suspicious and called the Department of Taxation and Finance asking about the policy.

The defendant was subsequently arrested by the Yonkers police.

Sentencing will be Jan. 14, 2014.

He faces a maximum sentence of four years in state prison.

Assistant District Attorney Brian Conway, Deputy Chief of the Public Integrity Bureau, prosecuted the case.


Lionel Thomas

Lionel Thomas