TOMS RIVER – The former treasurer of Toms River Elks Lodge #1875 will spend the next five years in prison after admitting she stole $119,000 for her personal use.
Ocean County Prosecutor Bradley Billhimer confirmed 46-year-old Christine Wilbert of Lakehurst was sentenced in Ocean County Superior Court to five years in New Jersey State Prison. Wilbert must also pay restitution in the amount of $119,010.59.
Wilbert was the treasurer for Toms River Elks Lodge 1875. Between April 2013 and June 2016, she allegedly issued 50 checks to herself but recording them as charitable payments. She also skimmed money from the cash she was supposed to deposit into the Elks’ bank accounts.
According to Billhimer, Wilbert, who pleaded guilty back in January, was responsible for issuing checks from the Toms River Elks account and managing the cash deposits received from various fundraising events.
An investigation by Toms River Police Detective John Bajcic revealed that between April 2013 and June 2016, Wilbert issued approximately 50 checks to herself, frequently recording them in the organization’s accounting software as legitimate charitable payments. Additionally, Wilbert skimmed monies from the cash that she was responsible for depositing in the Elk’s bank accounts.
“I hope Judge Gizinski’s sentence of State Prison sends a clear message that thefts of this kind will not be tolerated,” Prosecutor Billhimer said. “Stealing money from the Elks Lodge is betrayal of trust afforded to Ms. Wilbert by all Elks Lodge members. I am thankful for the efforts of Detective Bajcic and Assistant Ocean County Prosecutor Christopher Heisler for bringing Ms. Wilbert to justice” stated Prosecutor Billhimer.