Former Rye Golf Club General Manager Scott Yandrasevich, who left the club in disgrace amid a public outcry last year, appeared at an arraignment before Judge Joseph P. Latwin at Rye City Court November 18.
By Tom McDermott
Former Rye Golf Club General Manager Scott Yandrasevich, who left the club in disgrace amid a public outcry last year, appeared at an arraignment before Judge Joseph P. Latwin at Rye City Court November 18. Yandrasevich is accused of stealing $271,000 between 2008 and 2012.
In a press release, The District Attorney’s office said that the defendant submitted false bi-weekly invoices on RM Staffing stationary listing individuals who were falsely described as working in “Administration,” “Restaurant,” and/or “Operations” at the club. The false invoices spanned over 100 pay periods, resulting in the City of Rye paying out the $271,000 to RM Staffing for fictional services.
The allegedly stolen amount will raise eyebrows around Rye, not because it seemed high, but just the opposite. It was widely believed at Rye Golf Club and City Hall, that the “hundreds of thousands of dollars” Yandrasevich allegedly stole what would turn out to be a much higher number.
In court, Brian Conway, representing Westchester County’s District Attorney’s Office of Public Integrity, asked for bail in the amount of $50,000 bond or $25,000 cash. He argued to Latwin that an alleged theft of over $250,000 represented Grand Larceny, a serious felony, and that Yandrasevich, if found guilty, could be incarcerated in State Prison.
Yandrasevich did not speak, but the former general manager’s attorney, Kerry Lawrence of Calhoun & Lawrence, asked the court for an adjournment. Then, he countered Conway’s bail request, stating his client had yet to actually be indicted by a grand jury; that he had strong ties to Westchester through his wife’s residence and daughter’s attendance at a local college; and he mentioned that his client lived in nearby Danbury, where he is currently employed in the restaurant business.
Lawrence argued further that the requested bail might mean his client would have to be incarcerated, which he said would be unfair considering the charges. He also noted that his client demonstrated that he was not a flight risk by appearing previously for a meeting with Conway and that he was present in court for the arraignment.
At one point, Lawrence spoke of the public nature of the story surrounding Rye Golf Club, but Judge Latwin quickly clarified things for both attorneys, saying, “At this point, there is no story.”
Latwin agreed to Yandrasevich’s request for adjournment to December 17. He set bail at $20,000 bond or $10,000 cash. Later, Anna Yandrasevich posted the cash bail and her husband was released on his own recognizance.
Conway did not go into much detail regarding the charges against Yandrasevich.
But, an October 2012 report by Brune & Richard LLP, the law firm engaged by the City Council to investigate the matter, was later forwarded to the District Attorney. That report found a pattern of unethical accounting practices going back to 2007, when Yandrasevich began using RM Staffing, which the report found was a dummy corporation set up to profit Yandrasevich and his wife.
The $300,000 report also noted 67 instances of overbilling and improper use of RM Staffing by Yandrasevich, in one instance, paying off a $6,891 personal debt. In another, he arranged for RGC lifeguards to rent a Mamaroneck apartment owned by a friend, with the rent supposedly escalating from $1,500 to $4,750 over two years.
The same report noted that Mrs. Yandrasevich, who has not been charged with any crime, benefitted by the arrangement with RM Staffing. She received $57,000 2007-2009 according to 1099’s provided in the City’s report and later went on the payroll, receiving biweekly checks, which reached $4,200 at one point.
Just when the scandal seemed to be settling down somewhat, the long Rye Golf Club story continues with a new twist, with the next chapter due December 17 in Rye City Court.