JFK Air Traffic Controller from Manorville Accused of Wage Theft

A Manorville man is one of two air traffic controllers at John F. Kennedy International Airport who have been accused of stealing more than $165,000 combined by overstating the hours they worked.

Jeffrey Evagues, 54, and 38-year-old Asif Ali of Queens were scheduled to face the charges at Brooklyn federal court Thursday.

“For three years, these air traffic controllers engaged in a high-flying scheme to redirect public funds into their own bank accounts,” said Loretta Lynch, U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of New York. “Today they were grounded.”

Prosecutors said the two Federal Aviation Administration workers modified computerized labor reports on more than 300 occasions between September 2011 and October 2014.

As a result, they were paid as if they were controlling air traffic at JFK while they were actually on vacation, out sick, or had days off, authorities said.

Investigators reviewed security camera footage that allegedly captured both men entering the room that contains the computer from which payroll changes occurred, minutes prior to the alleged modifications, prosecutors said.

The case was referred to prosecutors by the U.S. Department of Transportation, office of Inspector General.