Brooklyn Toll Collector Swiped $24,000

NEW YORK (AP/Hamodia) -

A toll collector was arrested for pocketing more than $24,000 in cash tolls and replacing it with counterfeit bills during a three-week stint at the Brooklyn-Battery Tunnel.

A judge freed Jonathan Germain without bail Wednesday after his arraignment. The 22-year-old Brooklyn man faces up to 15 years in prison if convicted.

Brooklyn District Attorney Kenneth Thompson says Germain took cash from deposit bags 10 times between May 23 and June 13. A contractor discovered the counterfeit bills while counting toll collections. Thompson says an investigator caught Germain on video swiping more than $3,000.

The bills were traced back to Germain’s deposit bags, which are sealed and marked with an individual bar code.

“Public tolls are supposed to go into the public treasury, not the pockets of the toll collector,” Thompson said. “We simply cannot allow employees in positions of trust to rip off the public that they are supposed to serve.”