3 Former Union Officials Charged With Pension Fund Theft

Three people have been charged with the theft of more than $50,000 of pension funds for workers at two factories in Hudson County.  According to the Hudson County Prosecutor’s Office Special Investigations Unit, two of the the people charged are former union officials from the United Production Workers (UPW) Union Local 17-18, based in Brooklyn.

63-year old, Brooklyn resident Francisco Jara, a past business representative for the union, and 55-year old Elkin Garcia of Bayonne, a former shop steward, along with 52-yer old Marta Garay of Brooklyn, are accused of cashing pension loan checks and keeping a portion of the money.

The alleged theft took place on various dates between June, 2017 and July, 2019.  The more than $50,000 was intended for employees of Star Snacks Company located in Jersey City, and/or the Bayonne-based Gel Spice Company.

According to Hudson County Prosecutor Esther Suarez, the accused are facing each of the following charges:

  • Jara has been charged with Theft by Deception in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:20-4(A), a crime of the third degree; Theft by Unlawful Taking in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:20-3A, a crime of the second degree; and Conspiracy in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:5-2A(1), a crime of the third degree.
  • Garcia has been charged with Theft by Deception in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:20-4(A), a crime of the third degree, and Conspiracy in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:5-2A(1), a crime of the third degree.

     

  • Marta Garay has been charged with Theft by Unlawful Taking in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:20-3A, a crime of the third degree; and Conspiracy in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:5-2A(1), a crime of the third degree.

Each of the accused suspects is due to appear in Central Judicial Processing Court in Jersey City on July 7.

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