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Monday, January 26, 2015
Police: Former Rescue Ink member stole checks
Johnny O arrested for allegedly stealing donations from animal rescue group
By Alexandra Spychalsky
Courtesy LBPD
John "Johnny O" Orlandini was arrested on Wednesday and charged with grand larceny after he allegedly stole over $15,000 from Rescue Ink.

John Orlandini, a former member of Rescue Ink — the non-profit animal rescue group that operated the Long Beach Animal Shelter — was arrested on May 15 and charged with third-degree grand larceny, after police said he stole over $15,000 from the organization.

Police say that between June 2012 and February 2013, Orlandini, also known as “Johnny O,” cashed 141 donation checks made out to Rescue Ink, and kept the funds for himself.

Rescue Ink is a Queens-based, non-profit animal rescue organization. Its members are a tough, tattooed bunch who were featured on the National Geographic reality series “Rescue Ink: Unleashed,” and the group released a self-titled book in 2009. Rescue Ink has recruited police officers, military personnel and private investigators to look into cases of animal abuse, mainly in the New York area.

“This is devastating to me,” said Joe “Panz” Panzarella, founder of Rescue Ink, who called the situation “incomprehensible.” “We struggle everyday to try and make this shelter run. We fight for pennies to keep this place running.”

In 2011, Rescue Ink was offered a one-year, $15,000 contract with the city to operate the defunct Long Beach Animal Shelter, which had closed in 2007. Orlandini, 49, a longtime Long Beach resident, was largely credited with founding the shelter after he offered to provide Rescue Ink’s services. The city renewed its contract with the organization last year.

According to police, the discrepancy was discovered in March, when a donor to Rescue Ink requested a receipt for a donation, but there was no record of the check being deposited into Rescue Ink’s accounts.

Police said that an investigation revealed that Orlandini had cashed the checks. Det. Lt. Stefan Chernaski said that the investigation is ongoing, and that the Police Department is seeking the public’s assistance to determine if any more donations are unaccounted for.

“Rescue Ink issues acknowledgement letters to all donors for tax purposes,” Chernaski said in a statement. “Anyone who has made a donation to Rescue Ink, but has not received a letter is encouraged to contact the Long Beach Police Detective Division at (516) 705-7320.”

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andynapolitano

I am following up on a recent story The Herald did about Rescue Ink and the Long Beach Shelter. First I want to applaud the Long Beach students that spent the day helping the animal shelter in their community and collecting donations for Rescue Ink. As a parent I believe that kids should volunteer, participate and be involved......BUT

As devastating as Hurricane Sandy was to Long Beach,The Herald did an awesome job of keeping the island well informed within minutes of the storm. As the storm approached New York, News 12 informed the Island that Long Beach was a direct hit and it was understood that Long Beach was to be evacuated. However, some chose to stay and paid the ultimate price of damage and destruction including the Rescue Ink Facility and some of its animals.

As concerned people would, they emailed and Facebooked Rescue Ink from all over the world about the safety of the animals and their plan "B". Rescue Ink's response was, "The facility has been evacuated and all the animals are in temporary shelters."

Supporters were concerned because Rescue Ink had been posting on their FB page about having been in Canada a day and a half before the storm for a promotion event. While they did drive through the night to get back to Long Beach, they still chose not to evacuate although they were all present at the shelter the day before the storm.

It is my understanding that Rescue Ink did not prepare for the storm properly by evacuating or providing safe shelter from the storm. They instead chose to have volunteers "ride" out the storm along with animals that were left behind including a german shepherd named Buford and two kittens who drowned. The volunteers had to be retrieved in the middle of the night as five feet of water came flooding into the shelter. The volunteers grabbed all the dogs and put them up on shelving in the laundry room. The volunteers were found in shock, sitting in the complete darkness while water flooded in, holding on to all the dogs, on shelves in the laundry room. The cats? They were left to fend for themselves in the cat room.

Can you imagine how frightening that must have been for those animals? What about the volunteers? Where was the founder Joe Panz? He chose not to ride out the storm with the volunteers and the animals. He went home.

Did you know that Rescue Ink is NOT just a non-profit but also registered as a for-profit business and they operate primarily as such? Did you also know that Rescue Ink ONLY spends 6% of their donations and funds on animal programs as shown by their tax return, which is public information.

I suggest you check out these pages on Facebook to see all the facts.

https://www.facebook.com/pages/Rescue-Ink-The-Facts

and

https://www.facebook.com/pages/The-Good-the-Bad-the-Unforgivable-of-Animal-Rescue

Upon investigations not only into this rescue but others as well, we need to enforce stricter laws, rules and regulations about rescue groups. New York State has made it very easy for ANYONE to call themselves a rescue. Certificates, training and proper inspections should be mandated as well.

NOW due to the recent story posted about John Orlandini, I believe this will be the finale for Rescue Ink. This reeks of a rotten set up and Johnny O will certainly not go down easy. It will be interesting to see the real facts that come out in the next few months.

As I send you this email with all of my concerns I hope that you consider my facts and hopefully someone would warrant a full scale audit of this organization.

Once a supporter and volunteer, I have seen and heard many things right from their own mouths. I encourage you to spread the word, contact all former members and volunteers for a full blown investigation as I believe there is a lot more going on here. We knew a long time ago this organization was trash, thank goodness we stepped away when we did, unfortunately the people who donated their hard earned money didn't.

All we ask is that an audit be conducted by the IRS, the AG's office & the overseers of non-profits to see where all the donations actually went. If you do go to the Rescue Ink=The facts site on Facebook you will see a copy of RI's 2011 income tax return where they declare $30.000.00 income of which only about $1800.00 was spent on the animals. Since the city of Long Beach pays for all the utilities, maintenance, & vet bills for the Long Beach Shelter & the people who work there are unpaid volunteers, we want to know where all the money is going.They get donations, sell merchandise, have fundraisers. Where is YOUR money going?? Thank you in advance. Andy N.

Rescue Ink = The Facts

Bringing to light the truth.

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Sunday, May 19, 2013 | Report this
NoMoreTheives

SEARCH FOR "RESCUE INK FORMER MEMBERS, VOLUNTEERS AND SUPPORTERS" ON FACEBOOK TO LEARN THE TRUTH ABOUT ALL OF THOSE WHO STEAL FROM ANIMALS.

We can't wait to see Joe's story on the LIHerald for all the stealing he does. We're watching Joe and it's coming!

Sunday, August 25, 2013 | Report this
NoMoreTheives

JUST WANT TO SEND A BIG SHOUT OUT TO JOE PANZY AND BIG ANTSY PANTS FOR POSTING THIS ARTICLE OVER AND OVER. YOU ARE DRAWING MORE FANS TO THE "RESCUE INK FORMER MEMBERS, VOLUNTEERS, AND SUPPORTERS" FACEBOOK PAGE THAN YOU COULD IMAGINE.

EVERYONE IS FLOCKING THERE TO LEARN THE TRUTH ABOUT ALL OF YOU. NOT JUST ONE, BUT ALL THREE OF YOU. OVER A HUNDRED IN THE PAST FEW DAYS! THANKS FOR THE ADVERTISING!

EVERYONE CHECK OUT "RESCUE INK FORMER MEMBERS, VOLUNTEERS AND SUPPORTERS" ON FACEBOOK TO SEE WHERE THE REST OF THE MONEY WENT.

Monday, August 26, 2013 | Report this
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