BALLSTON SPA -- The president of an Amsterdam-based recycling company admitted in court Monday to short-changing Stewart's more than $150,000 in recycling fees, according to the Saratoga County District Attorney's Office.
Sam Donadio, 66, of 523 Lake View Road, Broadalbin, pleaded guilty to one count of second-degree grand larceny, officials said. He is to be sentenced in November to between one month and six months in jail, court officials said. Judge James A. Murphy III will determine the final term.
Donadio admitted he took the money from Stewart's Shops from 2014 to 2017 by under-reporting the weight of cardboard he recycled on Stewart's Shops' behalf at his company, Power Recycling, by about 20 percent, prosecutors said. Power Recycling is a division of Power Pallet, and Donadio was still listed on the recycling company's website as president as of Monday. There are plans in place for him to step down from that post, however, according to his attorney.
"The scheme was designed to increase the profits for Power Pallet Recycling by stealing a percentage of the recycling money owed to Stewart's Shops Corporation," prosecutors said in a release.
He is to pay full restitution of $152,086.61 by his sentencing date, court officials said. He is also to receive five years of probation. His attorney, Scott Iseman, said on Monday that the restitution will be paid shortly.
Iseman said the incident stemmed from a dispute between the recycling company and Stewart's over alleged contamination in the recycling, like plastic or paper that reduced the value. Donadio directed the company to unilaterally reduce Stewart's payments without following the contract. Donadio offered to pay back the money late last year, Iseman said. He was arrested in May.
"Sam hasn't tried to run away from the mistake he made," Iseman said.
The District Attorney's Office has been in regular contact with Stewart's representatives, officials said. Assistant District Attorney Charles Bucca prosecuted the case, and sentencing is set for Nov. 5.