Attorney General Gurbir S. Grewal announced that a Monmouth County man has been indicted for allegedly stealing 28 computers from the New Jersey Schools Development Authority while working for the state authority as a temporary employee.
According to authorities, Corey Jester, 49, of Freehold, was indicted by a state grand jury on charges of computer theft (2nd degree), conspiracy (3rd degree), theft by unlawful taking (3rd degree), receiving stolen property (3rd degree), fencing (3rd degree), and misapplication of entrusted property of government (3rd degree).
Officials say Jester formerly was employed by a company contracted by the state to provide temporary IT staff. He was contracted in 2017 to be a temporary employee at the IT helpdesk for the New Jersey Schools Development Authority (SDA). It is alleged that while employed at the SDA, Jester accessed a storage closet and stole 28 computers, including mini PC computers and laptops.
According to authorities, the computers had an estimated combined total retail value of between $25,000 and $30,000. Jester allegedly cleaned data from the computers, installed new software, and sold them online at a price per computer that usually was in the range of $100 to $200.
According to police, Darryl Jester, 55, of Lawrenceville, Corey’s brother, was indicted with him on charges of conspiracy (3rd degree), receiving stolen property (3rd degree), and fencing (3rd degree). It is alleged that Darryl Jester assisted his brother in selling some of the computers, knowing that they were stolen.
The indictment, which was returned on Friday, July 13, was the result of an investigation by the New Jersey State Police Official Corruption Bureau and the Division of Criminal Justice Corruption Bureau, conducted with the assistance of the New Jersey Schools Development Authority. The SDA discovered that computers were missing in December 2017 and, after an initial investigation, referred the matter to the Division of Criminal Justice. Both defendants were arrested and charged by the New Jersey State Police on Jan. 9th.
Second-degree charges carry a sentence of five to 10 years in state prison and a fine of up to $150,000, while third-degree charges carry a sentence of three to five years in state prison and a fine of up to $15,000.
The indictment is merely an accusation and the defendants are presumed innocent until proven guilty.
Attorney General Grewal and Director Allende noted that the Division of Criminal Justice has a toll-free Corruption Tipline 1-866-TIPS-4CJ for the public to report corruption, financial crime and other illegal activities confidentially. The public can also log on to the Division webpage at www.njdcj.org to report suspected wrongdoing confidentially.
The Attorney General’s Office has an Anti-Corruption Reward Program that offers a reward of up to $25,000 for tips from the public leading to a conviction for a crime involving public corruption. Information is posted on the Attorney General’s website at: http://nj.gov/oag/corruption/reward.html.