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Ex-Wayne Council Candidate Admits to Stealing $200K from Employer

Woman was one of two dental office employees who admitted diverting insurance checks, report says.

A Wyckoff woman and an ex-town council candidate from Wayne who worked together at a dentist’s office in Haledon have admitted that they stole $200,000 from their former boss, NorthJersey.com reported.

According to the report, Arlene Marchese, 35, of Wayne, and Karen Wright, 44, of Wyckoff, worked as the office manager and dental hygienist, respectively, at Belmont Dental Associates for more than a decade. The two pleaded guilty in a state Superior Court in Paterson Monday, admitting to diverting insurance payments from their employer over a six-year period beginning in 2005, the report said.

The women said they were authorized to receive the insurance checks, but instead of depositing them in the Belmont business account, they deposited them in a separate account and used the money themselves, the report said.

According to NorthJersey.com, Marchese and Wright agreed to a plea deal that will have them pay back the $200,000 in regular installments, and they will receive probation when they are sentenced on May 2.

Marchese was a Democratic candidate for Wayne's 2nd Ward council seat in 2011. Wayne Democratic Chairman Ray Egatz replaced her for unspecified reasons.

Pad March 19, 2014 at 03:58 PM
At least she didn't get a chance to steal in Wayne. They steal $200.000.00 and get probation? Others have stolen $200.00 and have gone to jail! Why?
Chris Traynor March 19, 2014 at 06:23 PM
No imprisonment? No mug shots? No video of their perp walk? Who are their attorneys? Did they share attorneys? Who was the judge? Is he/she known for such "soft and fluffy" sentencing? Are they both, by chance, caucasian? Are there any statistics which demonstrate how singularly light this sentence was when compared to similar crimes, involving similar amounts of money (across the entire racial spectrum)? To what degree was political influence a factor in this "happy ending" white collar sentencing? Is Very little information about the crime itself or the criminals that perpetrated the theft. Did they split the $200K evenly? What was their response, under oath, when they were asked "Why did you steal this money?" How long do they have to repay the stolen money? No comment from the agrieved dentist ... how did they manage this for so long? Did his dental fees increase as a result of this artificial drain on his finances that may have indicated that he needed more profitable pricing? How were they caught and at what point were they caught? Had they already resigned their positions? Did they spend any of the ill-gotten money? Did anyone else know or suspect there was something strange going on in their households? Will this felony become a part of their permanent record or will it be expunged when/if they repay the full amount of the theft? Wouldn't now be the perfect time to lean on the people who might know exactly why Marchese was replaced as a candidate for Council in 2011? DOES ANYONE ELSE VIEW THIS AS A BLINKING, BELL-RINGING, SIRENS-SCREAMING EXAMPLE OF ELITE PRIVILEGE UNDER THE LAW? (but we have the best system of justice in the entire world ... right?)
Thomas March 19, 2014 at 09:49 PM
I was a regular patient of Dr. Lembo for a long time, and Arlene and Karen were my favorite people in the place. Never thought that they would've been wicked enough to do something like this.
Chris Traynor March 19, 2014 at 11:40 PM
Think about it ... you know there's a fairly constant percentage of our population that are engaged in chronic criminal activity and yet do any of us ever notice the wicked in our lives? We're always quite surprised by the revelation for a couple of reasons. First, we never suppose that we'd have people "like that" in our lives and, second, we believe ourselves to be "exceptional" in our observational skills (when we mostly stink at it) and we'd be sharp enough to move away from crooks. It all gives us a bias and once there, we only look for signs, signals and observations that confirm their upright behavior to us.
Experienced Dr March 24, 2014 at 06:50 PM
Reliable sources have said that the good Dr.'s trust is what allowed such deception to continue.......furthermore, there will most likely be a civil case in the very near future that encompasses a much more vast cast of players............

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