Prosecutor Announces Arrest of Two Men on Identity Theft, Theft By Deception and Conspiracy Charges

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MORRIS COUNTY — Morris County Prosecutor Fredric M. Knapp, Acting Chief of Investigations Christoph Kimker and Mt. Olive Chief of Police Stephen Beecher announce the arrest of Mario Reis, 58, Budd Lake, on Identity Theft, Theft by Deception, Forgery, False Government Documents and Conspiracy related charges. Michael Kurzyna, 70, Netcong, was also arrested on Conspiracy to commit Theft by Deception charges.

On July 1, 2019, the Mount Olive Police Department was contacted by the victim who reported that sometime during 2016, an acquaintance of the victim, Mr. Mario Reis, contacted the victim stating that Mr. Reis was in need of financial assistance regarding his home heating oil company J&M Fuel LLC.  The victim then invested $35,000.00 into Mr. Reis’ company.

In 2019, the victim received a letter in the mail from a company by the name of CAN Financial.  The letter explained that the victim’s request for a loan was denied.  The victim had not applied for any loans and further found that multiple loans had been taken out in the victim’s name that totaled approximately $175,000.00.  As a result, the victim’s personal finances were being frozen for lack of payment and other loan related issues, which the victim believed were caused by Mr. Reis.

The investigation found that approximately $531,120.00 in loans were taken out as a result of Mr. Reis allegedly stealing the identity of the victim.  Mr. Reis allegedly utilized the victim’s information and allegedly completed fraudulent applications for loans, which were deposited into his fuel oil business account and were subsequently spent by Mr. Reis on personal and other expenses. Mr. Reis allegedly conspired with and allegedly utilized Mr. Michael Kurzyna, a loan broker at the time out of Netcong, to pass the fraudulent information to the end lender. Mr. Kurzyna allegedly agreed to broker the loans knowing that Mr. Reis was attempting to circumvent certain criteria/requirements within the loans.  At this time, the amount of the defaulted loans are approximately $281,906.20.

The defendant, Mario Reis, has been charged with the following offenses:

1 count of Identity Theft, in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:21-17a(1), a crime of the Second degree;
1 count of Theft by Deception, in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:20-4c, a crime of the Second degree;
1 count of Criminal Attempt to commit Theft by Deception, in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:5-1 and 2C:20-4c, a crime of the Second degree;
1 count of Conspiracy to commit Theft by Deception, in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:5-2a(2) and 2C:20-4c, a crime of the Second degree;
1 count of  Forgery, in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:21-1a(2), a crime of the Third degree;
1 count of  Forgery – Uttering, in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:21-1a(3), a crime of the Third degree; and
1 count of False Government Documents, in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:21-2.1c, a crime of the Third degree.

The defendant, Michael Kurzyna, has been charged with the following offense:

1 count of Conspiracy to commit Theft by Deception, in violation of J.S.A. 2C:5-2a(2) and 2C:20-4c, a crime of the Second degree.

Prosecutor Knapp would like to thank the Morris County Prosecutor’s Office Specialized Crimes, Financial Crimes Unit and the Mt. Olive Police Department whose efforts contributed to the investigation of this case.

Editor’s Note: An arrest or the signing of a criminal complaint is merely an accusation.  Despite this accusation, the defendants are presumed innocent unless and until he or she has been proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.