TOMS RIVER — Two New Jersey contractors were indicted Thursday by an Ocean County grand jury on 18 counts of theft after the pair were accused of defrauding 31 homeowners in Ocean and Atlantic counties following Superstorm Sandy.
According to the Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office, an investigation by its Economic Crimes Unit showed that Johnathan Price, 43 of Manahawkin, and Scott Cowan, 58, of Demarest, limited liability company Price Home Group, had received more an $2 million of compensation while performing “little to no work on victim’s homes” and instead “misappropriated the monies for their own personal use.” The actions are alleged to have taken place from February 2013 to March 2016.
“These two defendants preyed upon numerous homeowners who were at the lowest, most vulnerable points of their lives following the devastation of Superstorm Sandy,” Prosecutor Bradley D. Billhimer said. “They took advantage of people who were utterly helpless, who trusted that the defendants would help them get them back into their homes as quickly as possible.
“Rather than honor their contractual obligations, these defendants betrayed the victims’ trust in favor of their own unjust enrichment, and now they will be made to answer for their unscrupulous behavior,” Mr. Billhimer said.
Assisting the prosecutor’s office in the investigation were the Ocean County Department of Consumer Affairs, the New Jersey Division of Consumer Affairs and police departments in Toms River, Long Beach and Stafford townships, as well as police in Little Egg Harbor.
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