TRENTON – A Union man was one of two former employees of a Union County car dealership charged with second-degree money laundering and conspiracy for allegedly stealing more than $260,000 from their employer by using a shell company to submit phony invoices for vehicle upgrades that were never performed.
Attorney General Christopher S. Porrino and the Office of the Insurance Fraud Prosecutor (“OIFP”) announced today the charges against Tomas Alicea, 54, of Union and David Roscos, 38, of Elizabeth. Both were also charged with second-degree theft by deception and misconduct by a corporate official in an indictment handed up by a State Grand Jury on Tuesday.
According to a press release from the New Jersey Office of the Attorney General, the pair allegedly used their shell company Track Unlimited, LLC (“Track”) to bill Union GMC approximately $264,090 for vehicle upgrades on approximately 100 cars purchased from the dealership between 2013 and 2015.
“Small businesses face enough economic challenges without having to worry about their employees stealing from them,” said Attorney General Porrino. “We will aggressively prosecute anyone seeking to take criminal advantage of their employer, as these defendants allegedly did.”
Alicea and Roscos, allegedly used identifying information from Union GMC customers to create the phony Tracks invoices they submitted to the dealership for vehicle upgrades that were never performed, including leather seats and television installations, according to the Office of the Attorney General.
When Union GMC paid the invoices, Alicea and Roscos deposited the ill-gotten proceeds into a Tracks bank account used by the defendants, according to the indictment.
“By following the money trail we were able to expose the alleged crimes the defendants thought they could hide,” said Acting Insurance Fraud Prosecutor Christopher Iu. “Now they both are exposed to the serious consequences of their alleged illegal actions.”
The indictment is merely an accusation and the defendants are presumed innocent until proven guilty. Second degree crimes carry a sentence of five to 10 years in state prison and a criminal fine of up to $150,000.
Deputy Attorney General Colin Keiffer presented the case to the grand jury. Detective Sergeant Jarek Pyrzanowski and Detective Kahlil McGrady coordinated the investigation, with assistance from analysts Gregory Nolan, Christina Runkle and Theresa Worthington.
Attorney General Porrino thanks the Union Police Department (UPD), Det. William Fuentes of UPD, Union County Prosecutor’s Office (UCPO), Det. David Nechamkin of the UCPO, and Chubb Insurance, and Pennsylvania Department of Transportation for their assistance in the investigation.
Acting Insurance Fraud Prosecutor Iu noted that some important cases have started with anonymous tips. People who are concerned about insurance cheating and have information about a fraud can report it anonymously by calling the toll-free hotline at 1-877-55-FRAUD, or visiting the Web site atwww.NJInsurancefraud.org. State regulations permit a reward to be paid to an eligible person who provides information that leads to an arrest, prosecution and conviction for insurance fraud.