By DUSTIN RACIOPPI
Four men were arrested Wednesday for selling fake boarding tickets for the SeaStreak commuter ferry, the Monmouth County Prosecutor’s Office said.
Three of the men are locals, and all were charged with second-degree theft by deception, second-degree conspiracy, fourth-degree forgery and fourth-degree uttering a forged instrument.
Matthew Gaeta [SEE UPDATE BELOW], left, of Little Silver; Christopher Uliano, of Middletown, below right; Scott Dachishen, of Monmouth Beach; and Charles Frobosilo, of North Brunswick are said to have copied and sold illegitimate tickets to the commuter ferry’s passengers. SeaStreak, which consists of a fleet of five catamarans, runs daily from Highlands and Atlantic Highlands to New York City and back.
The arrests come as a result of a yearlong investigation by the prosecutor’s office after receiving a report from the ferry company that passengers were getting on board with bogus tickets.
The prosecutor’s office said that a third-party business owned by Frobosilo, Creative Impressions Inc., was contracted to stamp numbers on the tickets for SeaStreak. Frobosilo allegedly used extra tickets that were to be used in the event of errors in the stamping process to sell to Gaeta, Uliano and Dachishen. Authorities said they then sold monthly books of tickets for a reduced price to passengers, causing an estimated $600,000 loss to the ferry service company.
The men face up to 10 years in state prison if convicted, authorities said.
The investigation is ongoing, and the prosecutor’s office asks that anybody with information related to this case or any other ticket scheme contact Lt. Jason Clark or Det. John Maggs at 1-800-533-7443.[UPDATE, October 18, 2014: The charges against Matthew Gaeta described in this article were dismissed on November 29, 2011, by Monmouth County Superior Court Judge Francis DeStefano. On October 4, 2012, Superior Court Judge John Mullaney issued an order that the case file be expunged from court and other official records. ]