Terrence Hoffman, 66, of Shirley, defrauded pension system to take thousands of dollars in unearned benefits
MINEOLA, N.Y. – Acting Nassau County District Attorney Madeline Singas announced today that a Shirley man has been ordered to repay the New York State and Local Police and Fire Retirement System $465,647 as part of his sentence for defrauding the retirement system in a pension theft scheme.
Terrence Hoffman, 66, a retired Suffolk County Police Det. Sergeant, was sentenced today by Nassau District Court Judge Susan Kluewer to full restitution. Hoffman pleaded guilty in July 2014 to permitting falsification of records of the retirement system (a D felony).
As part of his guilty plea, he must repay the almost half-a-million dollars that he acquired illegally. Hoffman has also agreed to forfeit all future pension payments that he would have been entitled to; those payments will be used to pay down Hoffman’s debt.
“By collecting almost a half million dollars in pension payments to which he was not entitled, Mr. Hoffman stole from a pension system that thousands of New Yorkers rely upon,” Acting Nassau County District Attorney Madeline Singas said. “I will continue to work with the State Comptroller to defend our pension system from those who attempt to claim unearned benefits at the expense of other retirees.”
“Mr. Hoffman attempted to game the system and collect pension payments on top of a generous public salary,” State Comptroller Thomas P. DiNapoli said. “Safeguarding the integrity of the pension system is an essential duty of the State Comptroller. This sentence returns nearly half a million dollars to our state pension fund, My office will continue to investigate allegations of fraud and work with law enforcement to recoup money unlawfully taken from the system and our retirees. I thank Acting Nassau County District Attorney Madeline Singas and her office for their hard work on this case.”
An investigation conducted by the DA’s office in conjunction with the State Comptroller’s Office, found that from 1996 to 2012 Hoffman pocketed $465,647 in unlawful pension payments while earning a final full-time salary of $112,000 with Nassau Community College. Hoffman was repeatedly notified of the earnings limitations and the requirement to report his public income, but chose not to.
The case was investigated by the Comptroller’s Division of Investigations and Division of Retirement Services jointly with the DA’s office.
Assistant District Attorney Andrew Weiss, Deputy Chief of Acting DA Singas’ Economic Crimes Bureau, is prosecuting the case. Hoffman is represented by Thomas Spreer, Esq.