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New York Air Traffic Controller Sentenced and Ordered To Pay More Than $300,000

On March 23, 2016, Asif Ali, an FAA air traffic controller from JFK Airport, was sentenced in US District Court, Brooklyn, NY, to a term of 1 year probation. He was also sentenced to pay restitution to FAA in the amount of $204,151.53 and a criminal forfeiture in the amount of $99,642.18.

On June 4, 2015, Ali pleaded guilty to a conspiracy to commit wire fraud charge related to his role in a complex fraud scheme to alter employee time and attendance records. In December 2014 a Federal grand jury indicted Ali and Jeffrey Evagues, also a former controller, and charged each with conspiracy to commit wire fraud. In February 2016, Evagues was sentenced 1 year in federal prison and criminal forfeiture of over $135,000.

Ali, who worked at the ATC tower, JFK Airport, Jamaica, NY, admitted that he and Evagues gained access to the FAA’s Cru-X system and altered labor distribution reports to fraudulently reflect that they had worked certain hours. Consequently, their conduct caused FAA to pay Ali and Evagues for overtime and nightshift work, Sunday premium pay, and holiday work that they did not perform. Similarly, Ali admitted that when he took vacations or sick days, he subsequently altered labor distribution reports to make it appear as though he had worked on those days. As a result, he retained unentitled vacation leave and sick leave credits and was paid for time not worked. 

FAA indefinitely suspended Ali in April 2015. Evagues retired shortly after his post indictment arrest in November 2014.  

We conducted this investigation with assistance from FAA.