N.J. Family, N.Y. Man Brake for Auto Fraud

June 30, 2004

New Jersey Director of Division of Criminal Justice Vaughn McKoy announced that the Division of Criminal Justice – Office of Insurance Fraud Prosecutor has obtained an indictment charging four individuals with conspiracy, theft, tampering with public records, and false swearing for their roles in an automobile “give up” scheme.

According to Insurance Fraud Prosecutor Greta Gooden-Brown, George T. Guden, 58; Angela M. Guden, 56; Michael T. Guden, 26, all of Port Reading, Middlesex County, and John E. Gassert, 49, of Hancock, New York, were charged with conspiracy and theft by deception (3rd degree). Angela Guden was also charged with tampering with public records or information (3rd degree) and false swearing (4th degree).

Under State law, crimes of the third degree carry a maximum punishment of five years state prison and a criminal fine of $15,000, while crimes of the fourth degree carry a maximum punishment of 18 months in state prison and a criminal fine of $10,000. Additionally, the defendants face the possibility of the imposition of civil insurance fraud fines pursuant to the Insurance Fraud Prevention Act.

The Middlesex County Grand Jury indictment alleges that between January and March 2002, Angela Guden reported to Woodbridge Police, Woodbridge, Middlesex County, that her Lincoln Mark VIII car had been stolen from the Woodbridge Mall. According to the indictment, she falsely reported the car stolen to the police so that an automobile insurance theft claim could be submitted. Angela Guden allegedly submitted a fraudulent claim to Liberty Mutual Insurance Company and was subsequently paid approximately $12,300 by the insurance company.

An investigation by the Division of Criminal Justice – Office of Insurance Fraud Prosecutor revealed that, in fact, Guden’s husband, George “Tommy” Guden, and their son, Michael Guden, took Angela Guden’s car and turned it over to John Gassert. The Lincoln was later recovered in the possession of John Gassert, who was allegedly paid $100 by George Guden to dispose of the car and promised another $125 when the job was complete.

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