NY Man Defrauded Sandy Victims In Rumson
A Staten Island man was arrested and charged Thursday with defrauding Rumson homeowners of nearly $37,000 of deposit money intended to complete repairs to their home from damage caused by Superstorm Sandy, Acting Monmouth County Prosecutor Christopher J. Gramiccioni announced.
51 year old Frank Lewery is charged with two counts of third degree Theft by Failure to Make Required Disposition, one count of third degree Forgery, and one count of fourth degree Failure to Register with the Division of Consumer Affairs.
Lewery is being held on $75,000 bail in the Monmouth County Correctional Institution, Freehold Township, as set by Monmouth County Superior Judge Francis J. Vernoia, P.J.Cr. Lewery, doing business as FTK Contracting and FTK Developers, entered into a contract with the Rumson homeowners in November 2012 to repair damages to their Harbor Drive residence caused by Superstorm Sandy.
On February 14, 2013, the homeowners gave Lewery a check totaling $33,333, and another check on March 13, 2013 totaling $55,000 for work and materials related to the project.
On April 2, 2013, the homeowners provided Lewery with an additional check totaling $6,655.36 for the purchase of a granite counter top.
The checks were not used for the intended purposes.
In June 2013, the Rumson homeowners reported the suspected fraudulent conduct of Lewery and an investigation was launched culminating in his arrest Thursday.
The investigation revealed Lewery was never registered with the state Division of Consumer Affairs as a Home Improvement Contractor, cashed the checks at check-cashing facilities on Staten Island and Brooklyn, failed to place orders for the materials needed for the project, forged a check, and also asked a kitchen designer to lie about a non-existent order.