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Mahwah PD: Resident Took $60K In High-End Items Sent To Previous Homeowner

Steven F. Gaipa
Steven F. Gaipa Photo Credit: MUGSHOT: Courtesy MAHWAH PD

MAHWAH, N.J. – A Mahwah man forged signatures to take delivery for more than $60,000 worth of alligator skin duffel bags, passport wallets and other high-quality items that were sent to the previous homeowner, said township police who arrested him.

The intended recipient, who works in the high-end fashion industry and moved to a neighboring town, ordered the nine items from HL James while she lived in the Rio Vista section of Mahwah but never received them, Police Chief James N. Batelli said Friday.

“When she did not receive the items she began backtracking and learned through Fed Ex that the items had been signed for and left at her previous residence,” he told Daily Voice.

Officer Timothy Letavish and Detective Sgt. Kevin Hebert investigated and determined that Steven F. Gaipa, 50, “signed for the packages by using a false name and accepted the packages for his own benefit” with “knowledge of who the packages belonged to," the chief said.

They charged Gaipa with forgery and theft.

Gaipa was released pending a scheduled May 17 hearing in Central Judicial Processing Court in Hackensack.

“The items have not yet been recovered,” Batelli said Friday morning.

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