N.J. man stole $30K in checks to fund heroin addiction, police say

Reported on NJ.com a heroin addict Rochelle Park allegedly stole, forged and cashed more than $30,000 worth of checks from his boss to feed his drug habit after the victim allowed the employee to live with him, authorities said Thursday.
Nicholas Barra, 44, faces charges of forgery, theft of movable property and theft by deception, township police Chief Robert Flannelly stated.
The victim took Barra in for nine months “as a measure of goodwill,” the chief said. In late November, the employer learned one of his business checks bounced for insufficient funds.
“A further check into his bank records revealed numerous checks were issued and cashed without his consent,” Flannelly said in a statement.
Detectives were alerted in December and launched an extensive investigation into the transactions, Flannelly added. They identified Barra using bank surveillance photos.
Flannelly said Barra’s scam involved 130 checks stolen from the victim. Detectives were continuing to probe bank records for other possible thefts.
Barra told investigators he used most of the money to fund his heroin addiction, according to police.

Authorities said Barra, of Rochelle Park, remained held at the Bergen County Jail on $45,000 bail, with no 10 percent option.

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