Court Orders Fraudulent Pet Cemetery To Pay Restitution

In March 2018, the New York State Attorney General's Office began investigating Abbingdon Hill Pet Cemetery after receiving complaints about poor conditions. The investigation revealed Abbingdon was operating without a license and defrauding its customers.  In May, the Supreme Court, Orange County ordered that the cemetery be dissolved and reformed as a not-for-profit, and further pay restitution to the aggrieve pet owners.  

Abbingdon Hill, a for-profit pet cemetery formed in 1980, was one of the largest pet cemeteries in the state. In 2016, the land was seized and auctioned by Orange County for the owner's failure to pay taxes.  However, the cemetery's previous owner continued to collect fees from customers, and continued to conduct burials and cremations even after the cemetery's license was revoked in 2017.  This led the Attorney General's office to seek a court order to freeze operations, the cemetery's assets, and seize copies of all financial records and property.  

The suit resolved with an order directing the judicial dissolution of the cemetery, and the formation of a new not-for-profit corporation to take possession and operate the cemetery.  The Court also ordered restitution be paid to the pet owners, as well as civil penalties to the State.

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