A district chief for the Boston Fire Department was indicted on larceny and fraud charges for allegedly using taxpayer money for his personal benefit. Edward A. Scigliano, 45, is a Kingston resident and has been with the Boston Fire Department since 1996. Scigliano was indicted by a Suffolk County grand jury for five counts of procurement fraud and five counts of larceny over $250.
According to city records, Scigliano makes over $150,000 in annual salary. He was on paid administrative leave for over two years (28 months), before being charged. He remains on administrative leave, now without pay. Massachusetts Attorney General Martha Coakley made the announcement, alleging Scigliano participated in two illicit schemes to enrich himself using taxpayer money, which was to go to the department.
In one scheme, Scigliano allegedly made money from an emergency vehicle vendor, Greenwood Emergency Vehicles. In the other scheme, he made money, and kept products from vendors for the Boston Fire Department. He allegedly directed a vendor to issue checks towards his personal credit cards, totaling over $32,000. Scigliano allegedly directed another vendor, Northeast Rescue Services, to purchase items for the department, including a television, grill, living room set, exercise equipment, and gift cards, which he instead kept for his personal use.
Part of Scigliano's duties included, "acting as a contact for the fire department with regards to the acquisition of fire apparatus." According to Coakley, "this defendant abused his position as a public employee in order to benefit personally. He allegedly stole tens of thousands oftaxpayer dollars that should have gone back to the City of Boston, and instead, directed that money for his own personal use."
Boston Fire Commissioner, Joseph E. Finn said the allegations were more than disappointing. "I have zero tolerance for anyone who betrays the oath of office of a firefighter and pledge to take swift, decisive action if warranted, at the resolution of this case," said Finn. He continued, "Boston's firefighters work their shifts day in and day out to protect the public. Professionalism, compassion and integrity are the way we do our job, nothing less is acceptable."
At the Suffolk Superior Court, Scigliano pleaded not guilty to the procurement fraud and larceny charges. According to his lawyer, Scigliano was shocked at the charges against him. However, the Assistant Attorney General, Peter Mullin, said that they have evidence Scigliano was coaching witnesses in 2012 on what to tell the police if they were contacted. Instead, the witnesses contacted prosecutors.
Mullin said Scigliano told Greenwood Emergency Vehicles that he had the permission of the fire commissioner to spend credit balances on items for the fire department. Scigliano allegedly said he had already purchased the items for the department on his own credit cards, and was asking for reimbursement in the form of a check for his credit card company or personal bank account. Scigliano did not have any such authorization from the commissioner, and receipts submitted did not represent any payments he made for items for the fire department.