An Ocean County grand jury has charged a onetime bookkeeper with stealing hundreds of thousands of dollars from her employer in a scheme that lasted more than seven years. The grand jury last week handed up an indictment charging Rose Postiglione, 37, of Lammers Street, Hazlet with the theft of more than $75,000 from Lighton Industries in Lakewood between Dec. 28, 2001 and Feb. 10, 2009. Theft of $75,000 or more carries a prison term of five to 10 years, under New Jersey law. The indictment also charges Postiglione with financial facilitation of criminal activity, a crime commonly known as money laundering and also carrying a prison term of five to 10 years upon a conviction.
Senior Assistant Ocean County Prosecutor Martin Anton said Postiglione was the “trusted bookkeeper” at Lighton Industries, a major construction company, for many years.
“She was in a position where she reviewed everything,” Anton said.
Postiglione is alleged to have stolen a total of $420,000 from the company by writing a series of checks from the company’s bank account which were made payable to its vendors, Anton said. Instead of remitting the checks to the vendors, she sent them to pay balances on her Discover credit card, Anton said. An automated system at Discover scanned in the checks and credited Postiglione’s account, he said.
The amounts of the checks ranged from hundreds to thousands of dollars, Anton said.
Officials at Lighton Industries caught on to the thefts after an overpayment was made to Postiglione’s Discover account, and she requested a refund from the credit-card company, Anton said. Discover noticed the last check paid on Postiglione’s account was from Lighton Industries and contacted them for approval to make the refund, the assistant prosecutor said. Lighton Industries instead requested an investigation, which was undertaken by Detective James Conroy of the prosecutor’s office.
Postiglione is free on her own recognizance, pending the outcome of the case. APP