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Former Hazlet School Transit Manager Charged With Theft

The onetime manager of transportation services for the Hazlet and Piscataway public school systems, and her mother, face trial for allegedly skimming a total of $565,772 from the districts.

The Scales of Justice
Flickr user srqpix

Michelle Pumilia, 39, of Union Beach, and Virginia Lisay, 68, who lives with her daughter, wre arrested by investigators from New Jersey Attorney General Jeff Chiesa’s office and released without bail. Each is charged with theft by unlawful taking or disposition, a second-degree count.

Investigators allege that Pumilia authorized payouts to non-existent bus companies for transportation never provided, and that her mother endorsed many of the checks before they were deposited into a bank account. They estimate that the Hazlet district was drained of $229, 202 and the Piscataway system lost $336,570.

Pumilia worked for the Hazlet district from 2005 through 2008, then entered the Piscataway system from that point until this year.

The case has yet to be presented to a grand jury. If they go to trial and are convicted, each risks five to 10 years in a state prison and fines as high as $15,000.

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