Feds: Ex-Jersey City Head Start ED stole $200k from agency and bought Maserati

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The former executive director of the Jersey City Head Start Program, which provided early development services for underprivileged children, has been charged with stealing $200,000 from the agency and then purchasing a Maserati with the stolen funds, U.S. Attorney Paul Fishman announced. 

A Facebook photo of Robert Mays from May 24, 2012.
A Facebook photo of Robert Mays from May 24, 2012.

By John Heinis/Hudson County View

Robert E. Mays, 38, of Jersey City, was arrested yesterday morning by federal agents and charged with one count of embezzlement and theft from the Jersey City Childhood Development Centers Inc., which oversaw the Head Start program at the time.

Mays appeared before U.S. Magistrate Judge Cathy L. Waldor in Newark’s U.S. District Court.

Mays was the executive director of JCCDC from Sept. 10, 2013, to May 21, 2014 and the JCCDC received $8,020,919 in funds from the Administration for Children and Families, a division of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, for the benefit of the children who attended the child development programs that were managed by JCCDC.

Furthermore, Mays was not authorized to use JCCDC funds solely for his personal benefit.

Yet, he allegedly engaged in a scheme to steal more than $200,000 from JCCDC, principally by unilaterally increasing his annual salary from $96,500 to $155,000 – without authorization from JCCDC after two months of his employment with JCCDC.

Additionally, he is accused of withdrawing funds from JCCDC bank accounts for his personal benefit without authorization from JCCDC.

On top of that, Mays allegedly took JCCDC funds intended to benefit children to purchase, among other things, a 2007 Maserati Quattroporte and a fur coat worth thousands of dollars, authorities said.

The embezzlement count carries a maximum potential penalty of 10 years in prison and a fine of $250,000, or twice the gross gain or loss resulting from the scheme, as well as mandatory restitution in the full amount of the loss to JCCDC.

Mays is represented by Alex Booth, Jr. of Union City.

One month ago, Hudson County View exclusively reported that the FBI was investigating whether or not Head Start funds had been misappropriated, with May’s apartment being searched by the feds on September 11.

Mays is also a former dean of students at Snyder High School, where he was terminated for excessive absences and tardiness, recently served as the campaign treasurer for Bruce Alston during his run for the state Assembly in the 31st Legislative District.

Alston cut ties with Mays after he was arrested on domestic violence charges.

5 COMMENTS

  1. Don’t worry Mays. You’ll get 3 years, do 2 of it come home and some politician will reward you with a job making the same salary you had.

  2. What a disgrace!

    This lowlife was terminated as Dean of Students in April 2013 for “excessive absences and tardiness” and in September 2013, he is made Executive Director of the Head Start Program??!!

    Whose brilliant decision was that?? Seriously, who is answering for that ??

    It is beyond disgusting what goes on in this whole filthy county.

  3. Unfortunately greed supersedes a clear direction in thinking. Amazingly enough this is not and won’t be misappropriation of funds in HUDSON COUNTY HE JUST GOT CAUGHT… FRAUD IS GOING ON RIGHT NOW UNDER OUR NOSES WITH MISGUIDANCE IN PUBLIC OFFICE NOW…. HE WILL PAY FOR THIS INCIDENT AND REGAIN ANOTHER JOB WITH A HIGH SALARY LOOK AT MCGREEVY LOL SO IF YOU THINK THIS IS IT WRONG PPL OFFICIALS TOOK TRIPS WE HAD TICKET GATE AT THE COURT HOUSE TICKET FIXING JUDGES DOING BS CORRECTION OFFICERS POSING AS COPS PROPERTY BUYING ALL ENCOMPASSES HUDSON COUNTY HE ONLY BOUGHT A CAR LOST A TAD BIT OF RESPECT FOR NOW DO A LIL JAIL OR THE ALPHABET BOYS WILL HIT HIM WITH THE BRACELET AND HELL BE AIIGHTTT …. SMH

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