Four consultants have been accused of defrauding New York City of $80 million by steering contracts to shell companies that they controlled. The wife and mother of one of the consultants were also charged. The defendents were charged with conspiracy in Manhattan Federal Court on Wednesday, but haven't entered pleas.
The so-called CityTime system was supposed to save taxpayers money by keeping track of employee payroll. But instead, Mayor Michael Bloomberg said the consultants perpetrated a "major fraud."
"Here we had somebody that we trusted, or one of our contractors trusted, and that trust was misplaced and we just have no tolerance for this whatsoever," he said.
The CityTime system was supposed to cost a total of $63 million when it was started 12 years ago, but has cost $628 million, at last count.