FREEHOLD — A county grand jury Monday brought an indictment against a man for allegedly defrauding an elderly and ill Red Bank woman out of more than three quarters of a million dollars, the Monmouth County Prosecutor’s Office announced.
The grand jury charged James J. Demitro with second degree theft by deception by allegedly posing as the nephew of a woman who was suffering from dementia.
According to authorities, the prosecutor’s office and the county’s Adult Protective Services conducted a five-month investigation into Demitro and his alleged activities involving a number of real estate, financial and estate planning transactions the prosecutor’s office labeled “suspicious” occurring from March-Aug. 2011.
Authorities charged in a statement released on Monday, that Demitro had taken more than $750,000 from the woman’s various bank accounts. While presenting himself as the woman’s nephew, Demitro allegedly had a number of lawyers prepare legally binding documents allowing him access to her assets. In one case, authorities accused Demitro of preparing a transfer of the deed of the victim’s Red Bank home, where the woman had lived for approximately more than 85 years. And then allegedly he went on to oversee the preparation of a last will and testament for the woman, where he would be named as residual beneficiary and executor of the will, according to the prosecutor’s office.
Demitro has been known to go by the name “Anthony Tatalia,” with the prosecutor’s office noting the investigation at this point has failed to find reliable information for Demitro’s birth date or his place of residence.
If Demitro is convicted he could face as much as 10 years in state prison and Demitro is expected in Superior Court within in the next few weeks for formal arraignment on the indictment, according to the prosecutor’s office.