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Former facilities director at Empire State College accused of spending funds on personal items

Former facilities director at Empire State College accused of spending funds on personal items

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SARATOGA SPRINGS — The former director of facilities for SUNY Empire State College was arrested on Friday for allegedly spending $31,000 in taxpayer funds on personal purchases including pool supplies, grilling accessories, motor vehicle parts and power tools.

Erik K. “Rick” Reimann, 51, was arrested on 44 counts of second-degree criminal possession of a forged instrument, 40 counts of first-degree offering a false instrument for filing and third-degree grand larceny — all felonies.

An investigation by the New York State Inspector General found that Reimann, the director of facilities at Empire State College from 2010 to 2019, allegedly used a taxpayer-funded SUNY Empire State College credit card to fraudulently charge $31,685 for unauthorized and personal items between January 2016 and August 2019, according to a news release.

Authorities said to conceal the illegal purchases, Reimann forged or altered receipts and statements to make it appear as if they were for legitimate projects at the college. Reimann is accused of making 171 unauthorized purchases ranging from $10.44 for a pool scoop to $2,550 for a high-end air purifier and filter. Other purchases included guitar amplifier parts, Seiko watches, ski gloves, camping supplies, all-season tires and multiple electrical parts and kitchen appliances and accessories, according to a news release.

New York State Inspector General Letizia Tagliafierro said there was lax oversight at the college at the time, which allowed Reimann’s scheme to go undetected. A new administration took over in July 2019 and discovered the misconduct. Reimann, his direct supervisor and others have been terminated from the college.

Reimann was arraigned in Saratoga Springs City Court.

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