Ex-Aeropostale exec gets eight years prison sentence over kickbacks

New York -- Christopher Finazzo, former executive VP and chief merchandising officer for Aeropostale, has been sentenced to eight years in prison after being convicted of defrauding the company and taking more than $25 million in kickbacks from a key vendor.

Finazzo, who was found guilty in April 2013 of 14 counts of mail fraud, wire fraud and conspiracy, was also ordered to forfeit more than $25 million and pay the company $13.7 million in restitution.

Prosecutors said Finazzo entered into an illegal deal with Douglas Dey, a movie producer and the owner of South Bay Apparel, a firm that was once a major clothing supplier for Aeropostale. Under the deal, Finazzo from 1996 to 2006 allegedly caused the company to buy more than $350 million in T-shirt and fleece items from South Bay on behalf of Aeropostale in exchange for about 50% of the vendor's profits.

Prosecutors said the scheme enabled Finazzo to collect more than $25 million in kickbacks from South Bay.

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