DETAILS: Carrollton school officials illegally split nearly $50k in profits during scheme

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Three Carrollton Exempted Village Schools officials have been indicted for their alleged involvement in a scheme to sell air purifiers to the District using two shell companies, according to the Auditor of State, Keith Faber.

Superintendent David Quattrochi, school board member Michael Pozderac, and teacher Mary “Jackie” Pozderac, along with a fourth individual, Gus Nickolas, are facing felony counts of engaging in a pattern of corrupt activity, money laundering, theft in office, grand theft, having an unlawful interest in a public contract, and telecommunications fraud.

Quattrochi and the Pozderacs also face additional counts of prohibited representation by a present official and accepting unlawful compensation, and Nickolas faces an additional count of receiving stolen property, under an indictment handed down in Carroll County Common Pleas Court.

The Auditor of State’s Special Investigations Unit (SIU) began investigating the District after learning that a vendor’s address listed on a purchase order was the same as a school board member.

The Pozderacs, Quattrochi and Nickolas are alleged to have used two shell companies, The Phoenix Rising and Pozitively Quality Air, to sell air purifiers totaling $70,450 to the school district. The four then divided about $47,000 in resulting profits among themselves while attempting to hide their involvement from the District.

“Our district takes our work seriously to maintain the highest standards for fiscal responsibility and ethical practices in our operations,” said Dan Ries, Carrollton School Board President. “We are aware of the felony indictments against Superintendent Dr. David Quattrochi, Board Member Michael Pozderac and teacher Jackie Pozderac and are deeply concerned about the serious nature of the allegations.”

Due to a potential conflict of interest, the Carroll County Prosecutor’s Office has appointed SIU to serve as special prosecutors in the case.

Ries said it is a concern to the community that three ‘leaders’ may have used their positions for personal gain.

“It is disappointing to learn that three recognized leaders in our district may have used their positions for personal gain,” he said in a statement. “Their alleged behavior is inconsistent with the strong values we hold within our district.”