Troodler Fined but Avoids Jail­time

The Bond Buyer - - Front Page - By Kyle glazier

Aaron Troodler, the for­mer lawyer con­victed of fraud in the Ramapo, N.Y. case, will not see the in­side of a jail cell af­ter re­ceiv­ing only a fine and pro­ba­tion.

Troodler, a for­mer Ramapo Lo­cal De­vel­op­ment Corp. ex­ec­u­tive direc­tor and as­sis­tant town at­tor­ney who pleaded guilty to his role in con­ceal­ing fi­nan­cial in­for­ma­tion from in­vestors, must pay a $20,000 fine and a “spe­cial as­sess­ment” of $200.

He re­ceived his sen­tence on Jan. 2 in U.S. District Court for the South­ern District of New York in Man­hat­tan.

Troodler was in­dicted in April 2016 along with for­mer RLDC pres­i­dent Christo­pher St. Lawrence who has also been con­victed and is set to start a 30-month prison sen­tence in March.

The two were found guilty of hav­ing “cooked the books” to hide the strain in the town’s fi­nances caused by the fi­nanc­ing of a nearly $60 mil­lion base­ball sta­dium.

Troodler co­op­er­ated in the case against St. Lawrence af­ter his guilty plea, and a jury

brought back the guilty ver­dict against St. Lawrence in May 2017.

The govern­ment did not op­pose the pro­ba­tion of­fice’s rec­om­men­da­tion of a $25,000 fine and three years of su­per­vised re­lease for the 44 year-old Troodler, who was last year dis­barred as a re­sult of his felony con­vic­tion.

Judge Cathy Seibel de­cided on a lower fine but agreed with the pro­ba­tion.

Troodler sub­mit­ted nu­mer­ous let­ters of sup­port to the court, and his at­tor­neys painted him as a “de­voted hus­band and fa­ther of four chil­dren” who played a rel­a­tively mi­nor role in the scheme, which was mainly or­ches­trated by St. Lawrence.

Fur­ther, in con­trast to St. Lawrence, Troodler ad­mit­ted his guilt and spared pros­e­cu­tors the work and ex­pense of a trial, his lawyers said.

“His de­ci­sion to plead guilty is mean­ing­ful,” his at­tor­neys at Blank Rome wrote. “The govern­ment has stated that it be­lieves this case to be the ‘first mu­nic­i­pal bond-re­lated crim­i­nal se­cu­ri­ties fraud pros­e­cu­tion’ in the United States. Given the govern­ment’s ac­knowl­edg­ment of the novelty of this type of pros­e­cu­tion, Troodler could have in­sisted on “putting the govern­ment to the test” by ex­er­cis­ing his right to a trial. How­ever, Troodler pled guilty.”

Troodler, St. Lawrence, and two other in­di­vid­u­als con­tinue to face the pos­si­bil­ity of civil penal­ties in a case brought against them by the Se­cu­ri­ties and Ex­change Com­mis­sion. That case had been put on hold pend­ing the out­come of the crim­i­nal pro­ceed­ings, but the SEC has said it will con­tinue.

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