Anthony Agornyo, a Traffic Services Technician, allegedly stole the scrap metal from a NYSDOT yard in Hauppauge and sold it for cash in Freeport
MINEOLA, N.Y. – Nassau County District Attorney Anne T. Donnelly announced that a New York State Department of Transportation (“NYSDOT”) Traffic Services Technician was arraigned today on charges of grand larceny for allegedly stealing more than $3800 worth of scrap metal from NYSDOT between April 2022 and June 2023 and selling it to a local recycling business in Freeport. The alleged conduct was first referred to NCDA by the New York State Inspector General.
Anthony Agornyo, 52, of Oceanside, was arraigned on charges of Grand Larceny in the Third Degree (a D felony); Criminal Possession of Stolen Property in the Third Degree (a D felony); and Official Misconduct (an A misdemeanor). The defendant pleaded not guilty and was released on his own recognizance. He is due back in court on July 17, 2023. If convicted, the defendant faces up to 2-1/3 to seven years in prison.
“This defendant, entrusted with access to state property and equipment through his position with NYSDOT, allegedly stole dozens of pieces of scrap equipment from an agency yard in Suffolk County and hauled it back across the county line in an official state vehicle to sell it,” said DA Donnelly. “Agornyo allegedly held himself out as being on the job for NYSDOT when he sold the scrap metal at a Freeport recycling business for cash. Public servants have a responsibility to perform their work with integrity and honesty. When their conduct violates the law, we will prosecute them.”
“State owned property must be diligently monitored to ensure that it used for the good of all New Yorkers,” said New York State Inspector General Lucy Lang. “I am grateful to my team at OIG and our partners at the Nassau County District Attorney’s Office for their shared commitment to holding responsible this state employee and any others who would endeavor to take advantage of public resources for their own benefit.”
DA Donnelly said that, according to the charges, between approximately April 15, 2022, and June 10, 2023, the defendant, a NYSDOT Traffic Services Technician, on more than 10 separate dates, allegedly used an agency truck to steal over $3800 worth of scrap metal from a NYSDOT yard in Hauppauge.
Much of the scrap metal allegedly stolen and sold by the defendant was marked with numbers or words that identified the metal as NYSDOT property.
Some items were marked with “NYS INFORM,” the name of a traffic information system that is operated by NYSDOT Region 10 on Long Island roadways.
Other pieces of scrap allegedly stolen by the defendant included traffic light poles and traffic light cabinets.
Agornyo allegedly transported the stolen scrap metal from the Hauppauge yard in a NYSDOT truck to his home in Oceanside and kept the metal in the truck overnight, parked in his driveway.
The next day, Agornyo allegedly brought the scrap metal to a local recycling business in Freeport in the NYSDOT truck and sold it for cash.
Agornyo surrendered to NCDA Detective Investigators in Mineola on July 10, 2023.
NCDA thanks the New York State Inspector General’s Office and the New York State Department of Transportation for their assistance and partnership in this prosecution.
The case is being prosecuted by Senior Assistant District Attorney Heather Kalachman of the Public Corruption Bureau. Agornyo was represented by the Legal Aid Society at arraignment.
NYSOIG would like to thank Deputy Inspector General for the Long Island Regional Office Jean Carsey, Deputy Chief of Investigations for the Downstate Region Dave Regazzi, Investigator Kevin Coleman, and Digital Forensic Investigator Tony Provenzano for their efforts in this matter.
The charges are merely accusations, and the defendant is presumed innocent until and unless found guilty.