N.J. Couple Offers Guilty Plea in Auto Scam

March 3, 2005

New Jersey Division of Criminal Justice Director Vaughn McKoy announced that a Middlesex County husband and wife have pleaded guilty for their roles in an automobile “give up” scheme.

According to McKoy and Insurance Fraud Prosecutor Greta Gooden-Brown, George T. Guden, 58, and Angela M. Guden, 56, both of Port Reading, Middlesex County, pleaded guilty before Middlesex County Superior Court Judge Frederick DeVesa to conspiracy to commit theft by deception (3rd degree). The charges were contained in a June 17, 2004 Middlesex Grand Jury indictment filed by the Division of Criminal Justice – Office of Insurance Fraud Prosecutor.

When sentenced on April 22, each defendant faces up to five years in state prison and a fine of up to $15,000. Their son, Michael Guden, 26, same address, and co-defendant John E. Gassert, 49, Hancock, New York, have already been sentenced for their roles in the scheme.

At the Feb. 28 guilty plea, the Gudens reportedly admitted 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 more than $12,300 by the insurance company.

An investigation by the Division of Criminal Justice – Office of Insurance Fraud Prosecutor revealed that, in fact, George “Tommy” Guden and Michael Guden, took Angela Guden’s car and turned it over to Gassert. The Lincoln was later recovered in Gassert’s possession. The investigation further revealed that Gassert 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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