TRENTON – A former Hoboken police officer, now living in Seaside Heights, was sentenced for stealing $187,000 by filing fraudulent applications for federal relief funds after Superstorm Sandy, according to Attorney General Gurbir S. Grewal.
Nikola Lulaj, 45, of Seaside Heights, formerly of Dumont, New Jersey, was sentenced to five years in state prison. He was an officer in Hoboken, but had to forfeit his job upon conviction.
His wife, Majlinda Lulaj, 32, was sentenced to three years of probation, conditioned upon completion of 50 hours of community service. They have to pay the money back.
Specifically, they applied for Federal Emergency Management Agency assistance, a low-interest SBA disaster-relief loan, and state grants under the Homeowner Resettlement Program (RSP), the Reconstruction, Rehabilitation, Elevation and Mitigation (RREM) Program, and the Sandy Homeowner and Renter Assistance Program (SHRAP) funded by the New Jersey Department of Human Services.
They had claimed that the house damaged in Seaside was their primary residence, when it was a vacation/rental property, the state reported. Disaster aid was only for primary residences. The couple have since moved to that Seaside home....