A New York CPA has been charged with stealing $1.6 million from a plastics recycling company.

Todd Newman, 49, of Carmel, N.Y., was charged with one count of grand larceny and one count of repeated failure to file a New York State personal income tax return. Between June 17, 2005 and April 15, 2008, he was charged with stealing the money from B. Schoenberg & Co., a recycler of plastics and engineering resins headquartered in Yorktown Heights, N.Y. Newman served as the secretary/treasurer for the company and was a signatory on the company’s payroll account.

Newman allegedly wrote unauthorized checks to himself from the payroll account and diverted funds meant to pay withholding taxes to New York State tax authorities without the knowledge, consent, permission or authority of the owners of the company.

He is also accused of failing to file his own personal state income tax returns for 2005, 2006 and 2007. For the year 2005, there was a tax liability of $62,504; for the year 2006, there was a tax liability of $35,795; and for the year 2007, there was a tax liability of $13,480 totaling $111,779.

“Certified public accountants and other financial professionals are relied on to responsibly manage their client’s hard-earned personal and business assets,” said Westchester County District Attorney Janet DiFiore in a statement. “This defendant is accused of taking advantage of that trust, putting the financial future of a long-time friend and business associate in serious jeopardy.”

Newman faces a maximum of five to 25 years in state prison on the top charge.

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