Former Pine Belt employee Nissan Toms River has been charged with money laundering and theft, and prosecutors say he stole more than $1.3 million.

Martin D’Amato, 37, was working as a digital ad at a store in northern New Jersey. He is alleged to have charged the dealership for advertising contracts with shell companies he set up in an elaborate scheme, news release A spokesman for the Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office said.

After the funds were transferred to shell accounts he owned, D’Amato allegedly used the money for personal purposes.

The plot was discovered after an internal review of credit card budgets. In October 2021, the dealership turned to the prosecutor’s office regarding the findings.

D’Amato was arrested Monday by detectives from the Economic Crimes Unit. He is being held at the Ocean County Jail in Toms River pending a detention hearing.

Pine Belt Nissan in Toms River did not immediately respond Automotive news‘ request for comment. previously reported this story.

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