- Attorney General Anne Milgram and Criminal
Justice Director Deborah L. Gramiccioni announced
that a Somerset County bus company employee
has been charged with falsely claiming that
several buses were insured when, in fact,
they were not.
to Insurance Fraud Prosecutor Greta Gooden
Brown, Lisa Marie (Romano) Brunges, 38, of
Bound Brook, was charged yesterday (March
18) with third-degree insurance fraud, nine
counts of third-degree simulating a motor
vehicle insurance identification card, and
three counts of fourth-degree falsifying records.
Somerset County grand jury indictment alleges
that between 2004 and June 7, 2005, Brunges,
who was an employee of the Romano’s
Bus Service, Inc. and a relative of the owner,
falsely claimed that Romano’s buses
were insured by Proformance Insurance Company.
Brunges allegedly created phony insurance
identification cards to be placed in each
bus in order to give the false impressions
that the buses were insured. It is alleged
that Proformance had previously cancelled
the insurance policy with Romano’s and
that Romano’s did not have insurance
coverage after April of 2004.
June 7, 2005, a Romano’s Bus Service,
Inc. bus struck a motor vehicle which was
insured by GEICO Indemnity Company. It is
alleged that Brunges advised GEICO that Romano’s
was insured by Proformance Insurance Company
when, in fact, it was not.
addition, the indictment alleges that Brunges
falsified Certificates of Insurance in order
to deceive the Motor Vehicle Commission, the
Bound Brook Board of Education and the Middlesex
Board of Education into believing that Romano’s
buses were insured.
Detective Wendy Wylie and Deputy Attorney
General Scott Patterson were assigned to the
investigation into this case. Patterson presented
the case to the Somerset County grand jury.
indictment is merely an accusation and the
defendant is presumed innocent until proven
guilty. Third-degree crimes carry a maximum
punishment of five years in state prison and
a criminal fine of $15,000, while fourth-degree
crimes carry a maximum punishment of 18 months
in state prison and a criminal fine of $10,000.
Brunges also faces the possibility civil insurance