Business Owner Pleads: Thomas J. Damadio Said He Helped Cooper Hospital Executives Launder Stolen Money

POSTED: January 18, 1997


The owner of a Philadelphia check-cashing service admitted yesterday in federal court in Camden that he helped launder up to $600,000 that had been stolen from Cooper Hospital-University Medical Center by corrupt executives.

Thomas J. Damadio, 47, the owner of B & K Check Cashing in the 4200 block of Frankford Avenue in the northeast section of the city, said he took part in currency transactions exceeding $10,000 with the executives and did not file the required federal reports.

Since the 1980s, financial institutions have been required to report large currency transactions, as the government sought to crack down on drug-dealing and money-laundering.

Damadio told U.S. District Judge Joseph H. Rodriguez that he cashed large checks for Cooper executives John M. Sullivan and John H. Crispo Jr. in 1991 and 1992 and did not submit the written documents.

He also pleaded guilty to filing false income-tax returns in 1991 and 1992 and avoiding taxes on money the Cooper executives paid him to give them cash for hospital checks in their embezzlement scheme.

Damadio, who lives in Medford in Burlington County, was released on a $50,000 personal recognizance bond. He is to be sentenced on April 18.

Sullivan and Crispo and five associates, so far, were accused of stealing $4 million from the hospital.

Crispo has since died. Sullivan, 47, who was executive vice president of finance, is serving 55 months in federal prison.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Paul H. Zoubek said Sullivan and Crispo would send batches of checks to the cashing service.

The checks would be drawn on Cooper Hospital accounts and be made out to bogus collection agencies and fabricated vending companies.

Damadio said in court yesterday that at times he personally delivered large amounts of cash to Sullivan’s $700,000 mansion in Moorestown and to Crispo’s sprawling horse farm in Vineland.

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