A former Miami-Dade County supervisor who was in charge of purchasing alarms surrendered in Miami-Dade Circuit Court Thursday after admitting he diverted county-purchased alarm equipment to a company he owned called Moon Security Systems.
Ram A. Schratter, who spent 20 years with the county, will spend six months in jail, six months under house arrest, then placed on two years of probation. He has also agreed to repay the county $200,000, forfeit his pension, perform 75 hours of community service and not contract with Miami-Dade for five years.
Schratter, 57, who has been charged with one count of organized scheme to defraud, also agreed not to seek public employment at any level for the next five years.
The county’s Office of Inspector General, which undertook the investigation along with the Miami-Dade state attorney’s office, said Shratter would buy large quantities of alarm equipment and supplies, then falsify service ticket numbers to show the items made it to the county departments they were intended for even as they were redirected to his company.
The investigation was made more difficult because the invoices of the purchased goods didn’t contain serial numbers. The OIG found that Schratter stole $200,000 worth of equipment over a 29-month period, though it suspects he stole more.
Schratter was in charge of purchasing and installing the equipment. He resigned in March.
Inspector General Mary Cagle said the investigation, which began in October 2013, was initiated by a tip from a county employee.
“No public employee should feel that theft will ever be tolerated or accepted,” said Miami-Dade State Attorney Katherine Fernández Rundle.