FREEHOLD – Two men have been charged via direct indictment for a six-figure theft connected to a contracted trip for eight people to attend the 2019 Masters Tournament that never materialized, Acting Monmouth County Prosecutor Lori Linskey announced Thursday.
John Donadio, 56, of Belmar and Michael Moyer, 56, of New Orleans, Louisiana, is each charged with second-degree Theft.
An investigation by the Belmar Police Department that grew to also involve investigators with the Prosecutor’s Office determined that the primary victim in the case had entered into a contract with Eclipse Global Events, a Belmar-based company controlled by the defendants, for the trip to the annual golf tournament held in Augusta, Georgia. The contracted charge for the trip was more than $126,000, to include lodging, tickets (both practice rounds and tournament rounds), hospitality events, and local transportation for all eight travelers.
Yet shortly after the contracted amount was paid in full and immediately prior to the event, the victim was advised that their payment was “late,” and that he would not be receiving the trip – nor a refund.
The victims missed a good one – Tiger Woods won his first major tournament title in more than a decade at the 2019 Masters, coming from behind in the final round in one of the most significant moments in the recent history of the sport.
A Monmouth County Grand Jury returned the indictment late last month, and Donadio turned himself in on Friday, October 1. Moyer did the same five days later.
The case is being prosecuted by Monmouth County Assistant Prosecutor Kristen Anastos. Donadio is being represented by Thomas Huth, Esq., with an office in Red Bank, while attorney information for Moyer was not immediately available.
Anyone with additional information about the activities of defendants Donadio or Moyer is being asked to contact Prosecutor’s Office Detective Michael Acquaviva at 1-800-533-7443.
Convictions on these charges are commonly punishable by 5 to 10 years in state prison.
Despite these charges, every defendant is presumed innocent, unless and until found guilty beyond a reasonable doubt, following a trial at which the defendant has all of the trial rights guaranteed by the U.S. Constitution and State law.