State Prison for Crane Owner and Operator Who Sought Falsified Inspections and Licenses

Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus R. Vance, Jr., today announced the sentencing of MICHAEL SACKARIS, 50, to two to six years in state prison for having offered numerous bribes to the Acting Chief Inspector for Cranes and Derricks for the New York City Department of Buildings (“DOB”). SACKARIS was the de facto owner of NU-WAY CRANE SERVICE (“NU-WAY”), a Suffolk County crane company, from 2002 to 2007. He offered the bribes in exchange for the falsification of both crane inspections and operator licenses.

“Fatal crane accidents have cut short too many lives in New York City,” said District Attorney Vance. “Bribing a city employee – particularly one charged with ensuring the public’s safety – is more than a criminal affront to the taxpayers who expect honest services from the city’s workforce. It put New Yorkers at an unnecessary and unacceptable risk. We are fortunate that no one was directly injured by the defendant’s actions.”

On approximately 20 occasions between December 2000 and January 2008, SACKARIS gave cash payments ranging from $200 to $500 to JAMES DELAYO, who was then the Acting Chief Inspector of Cranes and Derricks for DOB. The bribes were accepted as payment for the completion and filing of false DOB paperwork indicating that NU-WAY cranes had passed inspections. In fact, the cranes had not been inspected at all, or DELAYO had performed only perfunctory inspections. On six other occassions, DELAYO accepted cash payments from SACKARIS ranging from $200 to $500 to certify falsely that NU-WAY employees seeking crane operator licenses had passed their practical examinations. The bribes totaled more than $10,000 dollars.

DELAYO pled guilty to Bribe Receiving in the Second Degree on March 23, 2010, and was sentenced in June to two to six years in state prison. MICHAEL PASCALLI, an employee of NU-WAY, pled guilty on May 18, 2010 to Offering a False Instrument for Filing, a misdemeanor, relating to false documents that stated he had passed a New York State hoisting machine operating license examination. PASCALLI was sentenced to 3 years of probation.

DA Vance thanked Assistant District Attorneys Deborah Hickey, Carey Ng and Sean Sullivan, who are assigned to the District Attorney’s Office’s Rackets Bureau. They worked on this case under the supervision of Assistant District Attorney Eric Seidel, Chief of the Rackets Bureau.

District Attorney Vance also thanked New York City Department of Investigation Commissioner Rose Gill Hearn, Assistant Commissioner John Kantor, Inspector General Michael Carroll and Assistant Inspector General Edward Zinser.

Defendant Information:

St. James, NY


Bribery in the Second Degree, a class C felony, one count


2 to 6 years in state prison