JERSEY CITY - The former project superintendent on a Jersey City high-rise construction project has been sentenced to six months in prison and six months of home confinement for a scheme in which he hid his employment so he could collect Social Security disability payments, U.S. Attorney Paul J. Fishman announced on June 6. Pasquale Zinna previously pleaded guilty to Social Security disability fraud and structuring financial transactions.
According to documents filed in this case and statements made in court, in 1999 Zinna filed an application for disability insurance benefits with the Social Security Administration (SSA), claiming that, as of March 15, 1996, he was disabled and unable to work due to a back injury. By filing the application, Pasquale Zinna agreed to notify the SSA if there was any improvement in his medical condition or if he regained the ability to work.
In September 2005, Zinna was hired to be the project superintendent for 160 Broadway Concrete, a sub-contractor at the high-rise construction project at 77 Hudson Street in Jersey City. According to the indictment, Zinna continued to receive SSA benefits and hid his job from the federal government by having his paychecks issued under other people's names.
Some of his paychecks were made out to his wife, Janeen Zinna, who pleaded guilty to "misprison of her husband's Social Security fraud." She was also sentenced on June 6 to two years' probation.
In addition to the prison term, U.S. District Court Judge Katharine S. Hayden sentenced Pasquale Zinna to three years of supervised release. He was also ordered to pay $101,753 in restitution to the Social Security Administration and to forfeit $98,000 involved in the illegal financial transactions. Janeen Zinna was also held responsible for the restitution.
The Zinnas lives in Hackettstown, New Jersey.