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West Babylon Man Arrested For Defrauding H.E.L.P Program

Nassau DA claims defendant logged in roadside assistance that didn't exist to ensure job security.

A West Babylon man who works for the New York State DOT has been arrested by the Nassau DA's office for allegedly falsifying the records he kept in connection with the state's H.E.L.P. roadside assistance program.

According to officials, Brian Miller, 55, a HELP program supervisor, was snared in a dual-agency investigation with the state inspectors office and charged with four counts of falsifying business records and one count of official misconduct. Miller was arrested with one other, Dominick Iannolo, 44, of Lake Ronkonkoma, for the same charges. Both men are due back in court September 11.

In a statement released by District Attorney Kathleen Rice, the charges claim that in July and August of 2010, Miller, while acting as a supervisor and truck operator in the roadside assistance program, was assigning cases to his own vehicle and then logging in assistance to vehicles that was never performed. According to the release, each time a H.E.L.P truck comes to the aid of a stranded vehicle, the operator must enter the vehicle type, license plate number and description of duty into a daily log. 

Rice said Miller was logging in actual license plates of vehicles whose owners claimed they were never assisted by a H.E.L.P truck, and some of the license plate numbers he recorded did not exist in state DMV records.

Rice indicated that Iannolo and Miller's motivation for the fraud was to avoid decreases in HELP Program state funding, which could include their own job security.

“Instead of helping drivers in need, these defendants were cooking the books by reporting work they never did,” Rice stated in the release. “With federal and state budgets stretched thin, policymakers need to make funding decisions based on accurate information, not the fabrications of a couple of self-interested workers."

If convicted, both Iannolo and Miller could face up to one year in jail. Assistant DA Kristofer Kasnicki is prosecuting the case. Both men are represented by Michael DerGarabedian, Esq.

Nicole August 01, 2012 at 08:41 PM
How many of us have had a flat tire, ran out of gas, just plain old broke down on the side of the road and just wished for a second that there would be someone there to help us out in our time of need. I know that was myself on a few occasions. These things happen. It's nice to know that if by some chance I get into an accident on the side of the road there will be those safe flashing lights behind me to protect me from oncoming cars. The HELP program has been there for me once and I was so grateful for their service. This service has saved lives, and I have seen it on many occasions. These men work to help our daily drivers that commute every single day to feel safe. I have seen these men and women on the side of the road changing a tire for an elderly lady, giving gas to someone late for work, I have seen this personally over and over and every time I remember the one instance I had on the Long Island Expressway when I needed help, and New York State was actually there for me. Not only were they there for me, but would not take any compensation no matter how hard I tried. In the end this man that helped me was Brian Miller, 55 of West Babylon, an angel dressed in bright orange and a hardhat. This same angel in disguise was praised, not once, but twice, by New York’s own News Channel 12 and Newsday for his dedication and service to the drivers of New York. We’ve all heard the saying “Don’t believe everything you read”. I think that saying applies here.
Daniel Mc Carthy August 01, 2012 at 08:44 PM
It took two state agencies countless hours of investigating this to get “four counts of falsifying business records and one count of official misconduct” Really, something that can be brushed off as not wearing glasses to the owner of the car wasn’t driving at the time these HELP guys came by. So this means 4 times in 2010 in a two month span they found an error in these guys paper work. I can assure you we all make countless errors at work in a two month period. DA Rice I think this is a huge error on your part. NOT GUILTY for sure. Just how much was spent on this big “cooking the books” investigation. I am certain a lot more than DA Rice claims these guys were trying to defraud.
Vincent Santangelo August 01, 2012 at 09:26 PM
I'm sure he was a wonderful man.. helpful.. and always there in a pinch!! ( I would be a happy and helpful employee too if I was milking and defrauding the system stealing and getting away with it..)
Melissa August 01, 2012 at 10:54 PM
Stealing what??? Milking what??? What personal compensation do you think he's getting from this?
Vincent Santangelo August 02, 2012 at 08:45 PM
Read the article.. job security.
John Abercombie August 02, 2012 at 09:14 PM
"Let he who is without sin cast the first stone." Im sure that you are a Saint. Do you know either of these men?
Daniel Mc Carthy August 03, 2012 at 12:53 AM
Vincent R U Kidding? U mean to tell me that in a two month span in 2010 they made up 4 reports for job security? These 4 reports wouldn't make or break the deal. Doesn't state farm fund this HELP program? So if it's already funded and job secured why make up anything?
Daniel Mc Carthy August 03, 2012 at 12:56 AM
Plus as supervisors I am sure they have years with the dot and would b last to b laid off. they would just filter them to another area of the DOT.
Ryan Fischer August 03, 2012 at 04:03 AM
He is a completely selfless man that would most literally give you the shirt off his back or save your life. He is a hard worker with strong moral compass and would never pass judgement on a soul (not unlike yourself). You want to complain some more, go ahead I got time
Linda August 05, 2012 at 11:12 PM
I know him personally. Ryan you are right he would give the shirt off his back, he would and continues to help anyone he can. Nicole he is an angel. One of the most caring supportive individuals on earth. My family will always be thankful and support Brian for all he has done for us and for just being the person he is. Will not judge when there are plenty of people getting away with worse offensives. That's to say if he is guilty which to date we do not know the full story. Don't judge too quick!
JESSIE M August 09, 2012 at 07:18 PM
wow this message is for Vincent, there two sides of every story. do you even know this man bc im gathering you dont. if you did you know he is the most amazing man that i know some one that my family and so many others look up to and admire. HOW DARE YOU EVEN JUDGE HIM
Vincent Santangelo August 12, 2012 at 06:15 AM
Im sure he's wonderful.. but I'm afraid people.. even wonderful people do what they have to do when confornted with possibility of losing their jobs.. its sucks.. but its a reality. I wish your friend the best.,
Vincent Santangelo August 12, 2012 at 06:19 AM
R absolutley right.. hopefully he is innocent and will be exhonerated. Just that.. where there's smoke there's usually fire.... but hey.. hopefully he is innocent.
Susan Loretoni August 15, 2012 at 07:15 PM
Sounds like these men are ,,,GUILTY ....of not wearing glasses,,on dark nights,,or glaring sunshine..in dense fog,,,or torrential rain..as speeding cars raced by.... while they were HELPING stranded motorists. The "investigators" in this case should get a REAL job.
Vincent Santangelo August 15, 2012 at 07:26 PM
What really has me curious... Is why did this come to light in the first place? He is well liked...and suddenly these charges appear. That would mean his superios must have felt he was doing something wrong... Police officials felt something was wrong... The district attorney stepped up and presented charges.. All these people took expeditious amounts of time energy and financial resources to go after who appears to be a seemingly nice guy. Why??
Sandra Miller August 18, 2012 at 12:55 AM
It is very easy to give a quick judgment ......... but we weren't there .......I am more suspicious of the investigation of "cooking the books." I have learned that it could be anyone of us ........ in this imperfect human race ..... given certain circumstances. But for the grace of God go I ...... is very humbling. Sandy
Daniel Mc Carthy August 18, 2012 at 06:16 PM
Bc someone was caught stealing gas and he made up a lot of things just to get a better sentence. It all stems from the mouth of a thief and now a liar. Police and DA's make false arrest and put innocent people in jail everyday.

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