By Darryl R. Isherwood | November 30th, 2012 - 5:39pm
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Philip Angarone, the former director of marketing for Birdsall Services Group, pleaded guilty today for his role in a scheme to circumvent the state's pay to play law by disguising illegal corporate political contributions as personal contributions of employees of the firm.

Angarone, 40, of Hamilton, pleaded guilty today in Ocean County to tampering with public records or information and prohibited corporation contributions through employees.  Under his plea agreement, the state will recommend that he be sentenced to up to 364 days in the county jail as a condition of a term of probation.

He'll also forfeit $26,775 that he was reimbursed by Birdsall for illegal contributions.  He will be barred from public contracts for five years.  Sentencing for Angarone is scheduled for April 26, 2013.

As part of the plea, Angarone admitted to bundling campaign donations of less than $300 from himself and other employees to donate to candidates and committees where Birdsall did business in an effort to circumvent play to play laws.  The employees would then be reimbursed by the firm in the form of a bonus.

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"This is the only Tea Party group that endorsed Mitt Romney. These guys are the Vichy French of the Tea Party movement. They're the guys who say 'Viva la France,' and then you can't find them when the fighting starts. Come on." - GOP strategist Rick Shaftan, on the Independence Hall Tea Party group.

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