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Worksite Enforcement
04/06/2012

2 Pennsylvania business executives sentenced for harboring illegal aliens, tax evasion

Employed undocumented illegal aliens in upstate New York

SYRACUSE, N.Y. — Two Pennsylvania business executives have been sentenced for the unlawful employment of illegal aliens and tax evasion. The sentence is the result of an investigation conducted by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement's (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI); and the Internal Revenue Service, Criminal Investigation (IRS-CI).

John Cimino, 55, of Doylestown, Pa., vice president of LTCI Ltd., was sentenced yesterday in U.S. District Court to six months home confinement, twelve weekends in a residential reentry center and three years of supervised release. He was sentenced for tax evasion and conspiracy to conceal, harbor and shield illegal aliens from detection for commercial advantage and private financial gain.

Anthony Cimino, 57, of West New Hope, Pa., president of LTCI, was sentenced to six months home confinement and three years of supervised release. He was also sentenced for conspiracy to conceal, harbor and shield illegal aliens from detection for commercial advantage and private financial gain.

"Homeland Security Investigations is committed to holding businesses accountable when they knowingly hire an illegal workforce," said Nick DiNicola, assistant special agent in charge of HSI Albany, N.Y. "Employers who willfully violate our nation's hiring laws gain an unfair economic advantage over their law abiding competitors. Our goal is to protect job opportunities for the nation's legal workers and level the playing field for those businesses that play by the rules."

In April 2008, HSI special agents discovered that LTCI, a Philadelphia-based construction company specializing in the refurbishment of movie theaters, was employing undocumented illegal aliens at their worksite located at the Shoppingtown Mall movie theaters in DeWitt, N.Y. The investigation revealed that LTCI had hired and employed eight illegal aliens at this site.

An additional investigation conducted by IRS-CI revealed that during 2007 and 2008, Cimino, who was in charge of the company's payroll, evaded federal tax owed on the Employer's Quarterly Federal Tax Return (Form 941) by paying his employees – both legal and illegal – a majority of their overtime wages "off the books."

In addition to home confinement and supervised release, U.S. District Court Judge David N. Hurd imposed a fine of $20,000 on each defendant. The Ciminos forfeited $223,000 to the U.S. government as proceeds from the unlawful employment of the illegal aliens. Additionally, the Ciminos paid $622,492 for under-reported payroll taxes owed, which included $225,000 in penalties.

HSI has a vital responsibility to enforce the law and engage in effective worksite enforcement to reduce the demand for illegal employment and protect employment opportunities for the nation's lawful workforce. HSI employs an effective, comprehensive worksite enforcement strategy that addresses both employers who knowingly hire illegal workers as well as the workers themselves.

HSI focuses its resources in the worksite enforcement program on the criminal prosecution of employers who knowingly hire illegal workers, in order to target the root cause of illegal immigration. Furthermore, HSI uses all available civil and administrative tools, including civil fines and debarment, to penalize and deter illegal employment. To learn more about worksite enforcement, click here.

This case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Carla Freedman, Northern District of New York.