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Photo: Shutterstock
Photo: Shutterstock

Four former executives of a livery cab collective based in Ozone Park allegedly embezzled more than $700,000 from the organization over a seven-year period, prosecutors announced.

Three of the ousted officials at Intaboro Acres Inc., with offices at 88-19 101st Ave., have been picked up for the scheme: Kubilay Durantas, 55, of Staten Island; Mitat Beymolla, 62, of Baldwin, Long Island; and Lisa Cruz, 49, of Bay Shore, Long Island. The company’s president  Iqbal Ali, 60, of Staten Island  was also charged but remains at large, according to Queens District Attorney Richard A. Brown.

 

Law enforcement sources said the four suspects individually and/or collectively stole more than $732,000 between 2007 and 2014 from the company, which sells shares to livery cab drivers in exchange for the rights to use company cars and pick up fares. The defendants resigned from the company after shareholders learned of the scheme and confronted them, according to Queens District Attorney Richard A. Brown.

“The four defendants were trusted by the cooperative shareholders to watch out for the best interests of the cooperative, which has been in operation in Queens for more than 40 years,” Brown said in a statement. “Instead, the defendants are accused of using the cooperative – both individually and in concert with each other – as their own personal piggy bank before being confronted by the shareholders and resigning their positions.”

According to the indictment, Ali and Durantas were elected president and vice president, respectively, of Intaboro Acres in 2005; Beymolla was subsequently elected as the cooperative’s treasurer. Cruz worked for the company as office manager.
A review of Intaboro Acres’ business records between January 2007 and February 2014 revealed a “systemic pattern of moving money out of the cooperatives’ accounts” for use by the four suspects, prosecutors noted. The funds were allegedly used to pay for personal loans that the suspects obtained, or to purchase personal vehicles or pay individual credit card accounts.
In one instance, law enforcement sources said, cooperative funds were used to pay for the construction of a swimming pool at Durantas’ home.
After the officials were confronted about the embezzlement and stepped down, Intaboro Acres’ new board referred the matter to the Queens District Attorney’s office for further investigation that ultimately led to a 10-count grand jury indictment.
Ali (in absentia), Beymolla, Cruz and Durantas were charged with two counts of second-degree grand larceny and two counts of second-degree criminal possession of stolen property. They each face up to 15 years behind bars if convicted.

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