Investigators say two managers at a recycling plant in West Babylon and the operator of a salvage business illegally transferred and sold recyclable paper and cardboard collected at curbside from Smithtown residents.
The materials that were supposed to go to the Smithtown Recycling Center were instead illegally sold for cash.
William Stegemann, 55, and Michael Dalessandro, 43, were employees of garbage carting firm Jody Enterprises, while 72-year-old Joseph DeMatteo owned and operated DeMatteo Salvage.
Spota said the investigation, which is ongoing, established that Stegemann and Dalessandro, instead of delivering the material to the Smithtown recycling plant, diverted the Smithtown cardboard and paper for under-the-counter cash payments from DeMatteo.
The trio is charged with second-degree grand larceny.
"We have evidence these suspects have been profiting at the expense of Smithtown taxpayers by depriving the town of recycling revenue for at least the past two years," Spota said.
WAKE UP WITH EYEWITNESS NEWS! Click here to download the WABC Eyewitness News Alarm Clock app from iTunes. or search WABC or 7online in the app store.
Get Eyewitness News Delivered