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Manahawkin Man Who Allegedly Ran Bogus 9/11 Charity Will Appear In Court

Manahawkin and Tinton Falls men sued for their part in alleged scheme; locals plan to attend

The Manahawkin man accused this week of promoting a bogus 9/11 victims' charity will face a judge at the Ocean County Courthouse on Friday.

Thomas J. Scalgione, 40, of Manahawkin and Mark Anthony Niemczyk, 66, of Tinton Falls will appear before state Superior Court Judge Vincent Grasso in Toms River at 10 a.m. Friday.

The for allegedly operating an unregistered charity.

Some who came in contact with the alleged scam artists say they plan to attend the hearing.

"We just want to be there to show our support for the AG's case," said Bill Cox, transportation coordinator for the Barnegat Township School District.

Cox, a former New York City police officer, filed a complaint with the Division of Consumer Affairs in May 2012 after seeing Niemczyk’s pickup truck at a World Trade Center memorial service in Barnegat.

Scalgione and Niemczyk were accused this week of promoting the charity by driving around in a pickup truck painted with the names of first responders who perished.

The same truck transported a tower piece recovered from the wreckage of Ground Zero to Barnegat last year to serve as a memorial for those who died.

Through the efforts of resident and Patch blogger Charles Giles and others, the 9-foot steel beam was gifted to the Barnegat Township School district in time for the 10th anniversary of the attacks.

Both Scalgione and Niemczyk drove the red pickup truck, which bore the names of first responders who perished in the attacks, but the state has since impounded it. According to Patch and MSN file photos of the truck, it bore different logos and license plates at different time periods.

Scalgione allegedly claimed to handle public relations for truck appearances, according to the Attorney General's Office.

Niemczyk allegedly lied to the people he solicited by telling them he was a former Navy SEAL and a graduate of the U.S. Naval Academy, and at one time had a license plate on the pickup truck reading “N-Seal”. Niemczyk pleaded guilty in 1989 to committing welfare fraud.

Niemczyk and Scalgione also allegedly have been selling T-shirts with New York City Police and Fire Department and Port Authority Police Department logos at 9/11 memorial events since mid-2011 to raise funds for their charity.

A state Attorney General's Office release states that both were not authorized to use the logos and that they allegedly also had a collection jug for cash donations when they attended events with the truck.

Mac August 04, 2012 at 10:19 PM
Beats me. Maybe he became CONCERNED when he heard a rumor about some tar, some feathers, and a spare steel beam that needed a new home.
F.Lee August 04, 2012 at 11:37 PM
What time will the ceremony be on September 11 at Town Hall when the Second Memorial is dedicated?
F.Lee August 04, 2012 at 11:47 PM
Will Barnegats most famous hero speak at the ceremony....
Phil Checchia August 06, 2012 at 11:43 PM
Correction: those from across the state and other states.
Phil Checchia August 06, 2012 at 11:46 PM
The word that was used was traitor referring to President Bush.

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