- Associated Press - Sunday, June 1, 2014

FREEHOLD, N.J. (AP) - Prosecutors say a central New Jersey businessman manipulated rental agreements to illegally pocket more than $250,000.

Thomas Carr, a 54-year-old Manalapan resident, is charged with theft, forgery and uttering a forged instrument. Bail was set at $105,000 and it was not known Sunday if Carr has retained an attorney

Monmouth County prosecutors say Carr was a partner in a business venture catering to investors involved in the purchase and sale of cocoa beans. They needed warehouse space for the beans, and Carr was in charge of making those arrangements.

Prosecutors say Carr misrepresented the cost of renting the space in an Aberdeen warehouse and furnished a business partner with a fraudulent lease to support the inflated costs. He then allegedly kept the difference between what was really due in rent and what was being remitted through him.

Carr could face up to 20 years if convicted on all counts. He was arrested Friday following a yearlong investigation by the county prosecutor’s Financial Crimes and Public Corruption Bureau.

A telephone number for Carr could not be located Sunday.

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