4/1 – New York Man Pleads Guilty to Bilking Rumson Homeowners

April 1, 2014
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By John Burton

FREEHOLD – A man from Staten Island, N.Y., pleaded guilty in Superior Court in Monmouth County on Monday admitting he bilked Rumson homeowners out of thousands of dollars for Super Storm Sandy-related home repairs that were never completed.

Frank Lewery, 52, pleaded guilty to one count of fourth-degree failure to register with the state Division of Consumer Affairs and one count of third-degree theft by failure to make required disposition of property received, according to Charles Webster, a spokesman for the Monmouth County Prosecutor’s Office.

As part of the negotiated plea agreement, prosecutors will recommend that Lewery be sentenced to three years in prison and make restitution of $30,740, Webster said.

Lewery, who remains free on $75,000 bail, is scheduled to appear in court on May 16 for sentencing.

An investigation undertaken by the county prosecutor’s Superstorm Sandy Fraud Task force determined Lewery never registered with the Division of Consumer Affairs as required by law and took deposit checks from the homeowners for intended repairs to their Rumson home, damaged during the October 2012 storm, and cashed them at check cashing businesses in Brooklyn and Staten Island, Webster said.

When Lewery was indicted last fall, Webster said Lewery did not place orders for material the deposit was in part intended to cover, forged a check and asked a kitchen designer to lie about an order that was never placed.


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