County Prosecutor Andrew C. Carey announced that five officers of the Edison
Police Department have been charged today with official misconduct and theft.
Ioannis (John) Mpletsakis, 38, Patrolman Paul Pappas, 43, Patrolman James
Panagoulakos, 32, all of Edison Township, Patrolman Gregory Makras, 33, of
Cranford, and Sergeant Brian Rossmeyer, 41, of Bedminister were each charged
with two counts of official misconduct in the second degree and one count of theft
by unlawful taking in the third degree.
active investigation has revealed that between November 14, 2016 and May 1,
2018, certain police officers of the Edison Police Department have been getting
paid for extra-duty jobs which they were not present for. These extra-duty, or "side jobs,"
are in addition to the regular hours which a member of the police department is
assigned to work for the town.
officers who volunteer to take these extra assignments have full police
responsibilities while on the extra-duty assignments. These assignments include directing traffic
for utility companies as well as providing security services for local businesses
and residential communities.
Edison, there is no centralized system of assignment for these extra-duty
jobs. Instead, several different
individuals within the department have wide discretion as to who gets the
assignments. The payment for these
extra-duty jobs can exceed $100,000 in a single year for an officer. This money is in addition to the officer's
regular base pay and overtime.
for these side jobs is billed through Edison Township payroll for police
services. The fee charged includes an administrative fee and an additional fee
for a police vehicle when required.
police officer who knowingly got paid for an off duty-job they did not do, is
guilty of malfeasance. Edison township
officials, however, are responsible for allowing a system of fiscal
irresponsibility to exist. The
assignment of extra-duty jobs being handled by multiple individuals with very
little oversight, paired with an inadequate system of accounting, has directly
resulted in nepotism and corruption." -Andrew
Carey, Middlesex County Prosecutor
has been a member of the Edison Police Department for 16 years, Pappas for 14
years, Panagoulakos for 4 years, Makras for 7 years, and Rossmeyer has been with
the department for 11 years.
officers are scheduled to make their initial court appearance in Superior Court
in New Brunswick on June 21, 2018.
investigation is active and is continuing with the possibility of additional
arrests. Anyone with information is asked to call Captain Kenneth Schreck of
the Edison Police Department at (732) 248-7453, or Detective Nicholas Chiorello
of the Middlesex County Prosecutor’s Office at (732) 745-5217.
is the case with all criminal defendants, the charges against these individuals
are merely accusations and they are presumed innocent until proven guilty.