MAHWAH, N.J. – A Westport nanny from Queens stole $100,000 worth of jewelry from the home of a seriously ill Mahwah resident she was hired to care for, township police charged.
Township detectives arrested 23-year-old Chandroutie Gurudat of South Ozone Park when she returned to the house, Police Chief James N. Batelli said Thursday.
They also recovered $30,000 worth of jewelry and returned it to the victim after discovering that it had been hocked in Queens, he said.
Gurudat, who Batelli said has an extensive criminal history, was originally hired more than a year ago to take care of young children for a Westport, CT family who have relatives in Mahwah, the chief said.
When one of them became ill, she began working there, he said.
She then began stealing jewelry “from different locations in the house,” Batelli said.
“Because of the condition of the victim that was being cared for the jewelry was not immediately discovered missing,” the chief said.
When it was, police were contacted and Detective Lt. Guido Bussinelli and Detective Sgt. Kevin Hebert began investigating.
Soon after, they discovered some of the jewelry at a Queens pawn shop.
“With the assistance of the New York City Police Department the jewelry was seized and identified by the owner,” Batelli said.
Although a municipal judge ordered Gurudat held in the Bergen County Jail, a Superior Court judge released her without bail the next day under New Jersey’s new bail reform law, records show.
Batelli’s detectives, meanwhile, were working with Westport police and other authorities to find and recover the rest of the stolen goods.
“All too often stolen jewelry is never recovered from the victim,” he said.
Bussinelli and Hebert “did an excellent job in tracking the jewelry down in New York City which is not an easy task.”