TRENTON – Attorney General Paula T. Dow and Criminal Justice Director Stephen J. Taylor announced that former Essex County Superintendent of Elections Carmine Casciano pleaded guilty today to tampering with public records.
Casciano, 64, of West Caldwell, pleaded guilty to an accusation charging him with third-degree tampering with public records or information before Superior Court Judge Michael A. Petrolle in Essex County. The charge stems from a joint investigation by the Division of Criminal Justice Corruption Bureau and the Essex County Prosecutor’s Office Corruption Unit. On Jan. 15, Casciano resigned from his position as the Essex County Commissioner of Registration and Superintendent of Elections as a result of the investigation.
Petrolle scheduled sentencing for Dec. 3. Under the plea agreement, the state will recommend a sentence of 364 days in county jail as a condition of probation.
In pleading guilty, Casciano admitted that between January and March 2007, in his position as the Essex County Commissioner of Registration and Superintendent of Elections, he altered, or ordered subordinate employees to alter, documents or record-keeping data.
The investigation determined that Casciano instructed one or more county employees to maintain an unauthorized log of vacation days used by county employees to work on political campaigns and paid days off owed to those employees to compensate them under the scheme. The investigation further revealed that, in an attempt to conceal evidence of a crime, he instructed one or more county employees to alter and/or destroy records related to vacation days and unauthorized paid days off of employees who participated in the scheme.
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