GUILTY PLEAS IN FORT FRAUD

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The three owners of the Red Bank house shown here have pleaded guilty to federal charges in connection with an alleged plot to defraud the government through a kickback scheme at Fort Monmouth.

A story in today’s Asbury Park Press says the trio bilked the government out of more than $990,000.

In federal court in Trenton Wednesday, Michael Rzeplinski, 56, admitted that in 2002 he used his position as a program director of the General Services Administration at the fort to arrange no-show jobs for Kirsten Davidson, 33, with a fort contractor. The arrangement netted Davidson some $283,000 for work she didn’t perform.

Rzeplinksi also admitted setting up a phony subcontracting firm that that bilked the fort out of $4,500 a month.

From the Press:

“It’s as if the government was a pinata and they were all taking swings at it,” said James Murawski, a Department of Defense investigator.

Davidson admitted to her role in the no-show scheme. Her mother, Connie Davidson, another fort employee, admitted she knew of the fraud but did nothing to stop it.

Rzeplinski, 56, bought the house, located at 192 Branch Avenue, in 2003 for $300,000. Monmouth County records show he transferred the deed to himself and the two Davidson women in early 2005. In recent months, an extensive addition to the house, including the construction of a large garage, has been underway.

redbankgreen stopped by the house earlier today, where a woman who identified herself as Kirsten Davidson said she would have no comment until “later.”

Sentencing is scheduled for Nov. 13 in Trenton. The defendants, who remain free on bond, face prison terms of up to 10 years.

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