STAMFORD, Conn. — A man suspected of acting as a Stamford Housing Authority representative allegedly embezzled $3,000 from city residents who believed they were applying for available housing locations, Stamford police Sgt. Andrew Gallagher said.
According to Gallagher, Gajesh Sewnarain told people he was with the housing authority and had vouchers that could get them assigned to apartments. He said he would take their personal information, as well as money for “fees” the victims would have to pay, Gallagher said.
Sewnarain would meet people at various locations and events in Stamford asking if they were interested in housing, Gallagher said. In total, he got seven people to give him a total of $3,000, he said.
During the investigating, the suspect disappeared from the area before being tracked to a florist shop in Tampa Bay, Fla., Gallagher said. After contacting the florist for confirmation, Stamford police arranged a time for Tampa police to pick up Sewnarain; that occurred Feb. 1.
Sewnarain, 49, of Jackson Heights, N.Y., was brought Monday to Stamford and charged with third-degree larceny and seven counts of criminal impersonation, police said. He was held in lieu of a $50,000 bond, Gallagher said.
The suspect also is wanted by the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency, Gallagher said.
Gallagher credited Investigator Michael Stempien with following the case and tracking Sewnarain.