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UPDATE: Massive Berkeley Brush Fire Nearly…

Ex-Council Candidate Close to a Deal in Forgery Case

Arlene Marchese and another woman are charged with diverting nearly $300,000 from their boss, a North Haledon dentist.

Patch file photo.
Patch file photo.
The two sides in the case against a Wayne resident accused of stealing nearly $300,000 from her former employer are close to striking an agreement, authorities said.

“We’re close to a deal,” said Jay McCann, Passaic County chief assistant prosecutor, noting that he has been negotiating a plea agreement with Arlene Marchese and Karen Wright. 

The parties were due to meet before Superior Court Judge Gretta Goodwin-Brown, but the proceeding was rescheduled, McCann said. The meeting was rescheduled for Aug. 6.

Marchese and Wright were each charged with one count of theft and one count of forgery. The woman allegedly forged employer Dominick Lembo’s signature on insurance checks for more than a dozen years. According to court documents, the women diverted nearly $300,000 into their personal bank accounts during that time. The woman performed clerical work for Lembo.

Lembo wants the women to repay him what he is owed in installments.

McCann said that it is not uncommon for someone to commit forgery over a number of years as authorities claim Marchese and Wright allegedly did.

“It depends on the structuring of the bookkeeping in the office a lot of times,” McCann said. “If one person is in charge of too many aspects of the bookkeeping procedures, then its possible for employee theft to happen over a long period of time.”

Marchese was a Democratic candidate for the 2nd Ward council seat in 2011 but was replaced on the ticket by Wayne Democratic Chairman Ray Egatz for unspecified reasons. She is the daughter in law of Gary Marchese, candidate for the 1st Ward council seat.

The women face up to 10 years in state prison if convicted of the charges.

— Have a question or news tip? Contact editor Daniel Hubbard at Daniel.Hubbard@patch.com or find us on Facebook and Twitter. For news straight to your inbox, sign up for our daily newsletter.

Flood Plain July 30, 2013 at 09:11 PM
There should be no "deal." Just prison, mandatory restitution, and a felony record to prevent them from entering any government functions.
Experienced Dr July 30, 2013 at 11:23 PM
Your suggestion , sources have it, is still a possibility Flood Plain..........
Luvy July 31, 2013 at 08:24 AM
Kind of hard to pay restitution when you are sitting in a jail without having a source of income. Looks like the doctor is just hoping to get his money back, as he should. I am sure they would still have a felony record even if a deal is reached.
Experienced Dr July 31, 2013 at 10:13 AM
@Luvy: Sometimes the only way criminals can be made to understand their behavior and responsibility is via restitution............But JUSTICE certainly is more important than money.......As reliable Sources have said......
Yanksandmore July 31, 2013 at 05:35 PM
The good doctor has a lot to say. I sure hope he doesn't have skeletons in his closet. He also apparently loves links, I may have something you will really love
Experienced Dr July 31, 2013 at 06:47 PM
No skeletons @Yanksandmore......... BRING IT!
Pad August 03, 2013 at 05:04 PM
Another outstanding citizen of Wayne. I say jail time + restitution.
Experienced Dr August 04, 2013 at 11:21 AM
The fat lady hasn't sung yet, reliable sources have said!
Flood Plain August 04, 2013 at 10:24 PM
JAIL, RESTITUTION, AND A LIFETIME BAN FROM HOLDING ANY POSITION IN GOVERNMENT--NEITHER EMPLOYEE,NOR ELECTED. The restitution is easy; take all of their assets, put judgements out on them and renew the judgements as needed by time.
Experienced Dr December 20, 2013 at 03:24 PM
So....as 2013 closes......it seems the suspects have no true intention to make pleas w/ restitution.......Therefore, reliable sources have it that there will be a trial where these women will face TEN year jail terms........
wyldthang18 March 07, 2014 at 03:57 PM
Any update to this story? Its now March.
Experienced Dr March 10, 2014 at 02:55 PM
March 17th plea date............

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