New York business owners and residents thought Emmanuel Amofah was a miracle worker, as the parking-ticket broker “fixed their citations.” But as the New York Post reveals, he actually swindled his true believers.
The Post reports that Amofah was busted when an “administrative law judge noticed Muni-Meter receipts he doctored contained glaring errors.” Now, clients who thought they were in the clear are learning that they have been unknowingly amassing terrible fines.
The Post says for more than 3 ¹/₂ years, through Parking Ticket Busters Inc., Amofah was submitting phony documents to get 816 summonses dismissed, leaving his trusting clients on the line for triple damages by the city.
The Post reports:
Emmanuel Amofah used his intimate knowledge of the Parking Violations Bureau to cheat the city out of more than $100,000 in fines, officials said.
Amofah was a one-time administrative law judge at the PVB before opening a ticket-broker business, where he appealed clients’ summonses for 20 percent of every citation he got tossed.
He was wildly successful, but only because he was doctoring Muni-Meter receipts and knew exactly how to avoid detection, according to authorities.
Ticket brokers usually appeal summonses in person at the PVB offices — often bringing in hundreds of tickets at a time for a judge to go through en masse.
But Amofah conducted his appeals online, knowing they would be randomly assigned to different judges and a pattern of fraud would be harder to detect, Finance Department officials said in a complaint.
Amofah was busted after another administrative law judge noticed Muni-Meter receipts he doctored contained glaring errors. Some receipts showed the wrong meter rate, while others had doctored time stamps or listed meters that had simply never existed.
The scale of the scam is now surfacing, as the city’s Finance Department reinstated the dismissed tickets. Records revealed by the Office of Administrative Trials & Hearings show Parking Ticket Busters had submitted hundreds of fake and doctored paperwork for summonses between May 15, 2013, and Dec. 14, 2016.
Amofah’s clients are now left with $282,000 in penalties, and they are liable. The city reportedly holds registered drivers liable for fraud–even if it’s committed by hired ticket brokers–and charges triple in damages, according to the Post.
Two small business owners revealed the devastating financial burden they must now bear.
Frank Mitarotondam, who owns Westchester fire-safety company Chief Fire Prevention and Mechanical Corp., won dismissals of approximately $10,000 in parking tickets through Amofah. He now faces a $50,000 hit, and is appealing the additional penalties.
Giancarlo DeLillis, who owns J&G Marble and Tile Corp. in Queens, owes the city $152,820 in base fines, plus penalties on 116 summonses, according to court records.
“That’s pretty much my operating capital,” said DeLillis. He’s playing off two workers and took three company trucks off the road, not wanting them to be towed. He is also appealing.
— New York Post (@nypost) December 20, 2017
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