Former College of New Rochelle controller sentenced for fraud

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The former controller of the now-closed College of New Rochelle has been sentenced to three years in prison for securities fraud and failing to pay the college's payroll taxes.

It was just about a week ago when the College of New Rochelle held its final graduation ceremony. Prosecutors say fraud by the school's former controller directly led to the closure of the 115-year-old school.

In March, Keith Borge pleaded guilty to federal charges of securities fraud and failing to pay payroll taxes.

Prosecutors say Borge doctored books to hide $31.2 million in debts. That ultimately led to a financial crisis that, despite fundraising and other measures, school officials simply could not fix and the college was forced to close.

In a plea deal, the 62-year-old from Valley Cottage admitted to not paying the schools taxes for two years and also admitted to making false entries to overstate net assets by more than $24 million. He is not accused of personally benefiting from his actions.

Keith Borge's attorney says his client is being used as a scapegoat and asked for no prison time.

In the meantime, College of New Rochelle officials reached a deal to allow most of its students to transfer to Mercy College, which will lease the main campus for up to two years while a buyer is sought.

Borge was also fined $25,000 and ordered to pay $13 million in restitution.

He has been ordered to report to the Federal Bureau of Prisons on Oct. 11 to start serving his sentence.  There is no word yet on where that prison will be, but the judge said he would make a recommendation that it be fairly close to home.

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