Ex-Freehold #soccer league #treasurer #admits to $400K #theft

A former volunteer treasurer for the Freehold Soccer League admitted Monday to stealing more than $400,000 over a span of about four years to pay for personal expenses and funnel money to his personal business, according to the Monmouth County Prosecutor’s Office.

Anthony Gallo, of Freehold Township, pleaded guilty to one count of second-degree theft before county Superior Court Judge Vincent A. Falcetano Jr., Charlie Webster, a spokesman for the prosecutor’s office, said Monday.

Gallo, 58, was first charged in March with one count of second-degree theft in connection to thousands of dollars that went missing from 2012 to 2016. Months later, Gallo was indicted and charged with a total of 14 offenses that included theft of movable property, misapplication of entrusted property, misconduct by a corporate official, falsifying records and forgery.

But on Monday, under the terms of a plea deal, the charges shrunk back to just one offense.

Gallo, who is also employed at his company, Beacon Financial Services, faces up to six years in a New Jersey state prison and must pay back $280,000, Webster said.

Before Gallo was charged, Webster said Gallo paid more than $119,000 back into the league’s accounts “to prevent his crime from being detected.”

Gallo was still implicated.

The probe into missing money began after the president for the soccer league made a referral to the Monmouth County Prosecutor’s Office’s Financial Crimes Unit, saying uniforms were not paid for and funds were missing from the organization’s bank accounts, Webster said.

The investigation began March 2016, and Gallo was first charged.

Eventually, Webster said Gallo admitted he stole more than $400,000 from the league while serving as volunteer treasurer.

Gallo wrote checks to himself and Beacon Financial Services from the league’s accounts, took more than $300,000 in cash, made “numerous unauthorized ATM withdrawals” and used league money to bankroll personal expenses, Webster said.

A profile for Gallo on Beacon Financial Service’s website says Gallo is a founding member of the company, chairman and chief executive who is responsible for the “continued growth of Beacon and its affiliates in a manner that preserves the commitment to client service and maintains its rich culture.”

Gallo was previously the chief financial officer of a “Domestic and International based Consulting Group” and “Director of Finance for an International based Group,” according to Gallo’s company profile on Beacon’s website. The profile did not specify the names of those companies.

Lawrence Nelsen, a county assistant prosecutor, handled the case.

Gallo’s sentencing date is scheduled for Jan. 19 before Falcetano. Red Bank-based attorney Tara Breslow is representing Gallo.

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