Conn. Waste Company Owner Gets Probation; Judge Calls Him a 'Victim'

Date: December 3, 2009

Source: US Attorney Nora R. Dannehy

The owner of a Danbury, CT waste company was given probation and fined for his role in a now famous price-fixing scheme. Joseph R. LoStocco, the 50-year-old owner of JR LoStocco Carting pleaded guilty to conspiring to violate the federal Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act (RICO) as early as April 2006. He was given a lighter sentence owing to his early acceptance of responsibility and subsequent cooperation with authorities. Senior U.S. District Judge Ellen Bree Burns called LoStocco a "victim as well as a defendant." LoStocco admitted he participated in a "property rights system" that pushed haulers known locally as carters to collude to keep prices high and agree not to compete for one another's customers. Proponents employed Genovese crime family muscle to enforce compliance. Thirty-three people were charged as a result of the investigation. All have pleaded guilty.

PRESS RELEASE
United States Attorney's Office District of Connecticut

December 2, 2009

Owner of Danbury Trash Company is Sentenced

Nora R. Dannehy, United States Attorney for the District of Connecticut, announced that JOSEPH R. LoSTOCCO, also known as "J.R.," 50, was sentenced today by Senior United States District Judge Ellen Bree Burns in New Haven to three years of probation for conspiring to violate the federal Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act (RICO). LoSTOCCO also was ordered to pay a fine in the amount of $10,000. LoSTOCCO pleaded guilty to the charge on April 27, 2006.

According to court documents and statements made in court, this matter stems from a long-term investigation into the waste-hauling industry in Connecticut and eastern New York. LoSTOCCO, the owner of JR LoStocco Carting of Danbury, has admitted that he participated in a "property rights system," through which carters would not service or compete for other carters'customers. The property rights system essentially destroys free enterprise, allowing the participating carters to artificially inflate their prices and leaving waste removal customers with no other options. In this scheme, which was principally directed at commercial and municipal customers, participating carters agreed to quote inflated prices to customers controlled by other carters.

During today's sentencing, Judge Burns sentenced LoSTOCCO below the recommended federal sentencing guidelines range of 21 to 27 months of imprisonment, calling LoSTOCCO a "victim as well as a defendant." Judge Burns credited LoSTOCCO for his early acceptance of responsibility, noting that he was the first defendant to plead guilty as a result of the investigation.

Thirty-three individuals were charged as a result of the investigation. All have pleaded guilty.

This matter was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Internal Revenue Service Criminal Investigation Division, the United States Department of Labor, Office of Inspector General and the Connecticut State Police. Assistant United States Attorneys Michael J. Gustafson, Raymond F. Miller, and Henry K. Kopel are prosecuting these cases.

For more information, contact:
U.S. ATTORNEY'S OFFICE
Tom Carson
(203) 821-3722
thomas.carson@usdoj.gov.

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