TOMS RIVER, NJ – Sources within the Ocean County GOP today said the spying operation against Toms River School Board member Ashley Lamb and her husband Justin came from the top of the former Ocean County Republican power structure. Last week, emails revealed that Toms River Council President Kevin Geoghegan gave the green light on an $8,000 voyeuristic spying operation against Lamb and her husband, who also serves on the Toms River Township Council.
That green light came from former Ocean County GOP Chairman Frank Holman and now sources today revealed Toms River Mayor Maurice Hill was also involved in the discussions to hire a private investigator to spy on the couple this past spring.
McGuckin approved $8,000 in Ocean County GOP finances to be paid to Toms River lawyer Kevin Riordan to appear as if it was for legal services, masking the money’s true intent, to be used to spy on a school board member and a sitting councilperson.
“I’m not surprised my political adversaries led by Assemblyman Greg McGuckin would try a cover-up. I’ve called out corruption like this in Toms River for years,” Justin Lamb said.
According to an article in the Asbury Park Press, Geohegan approved the money swap between the GOP and Riordan to be paid to a Monmouth County private investigator.
In an email from McGuckin to Riordan dated April 18, the assemblyman wrote: “Kevin: Per our discussions, Jerry Conaty will be sending you a check for $5500. The retainer agreement for the investigator, which was originally sent to Kevin Geoghegan, is attached. Let me know if you have any questions. Thanks, g,” the Asbury Park Press reported.
Conaty was the treasurer of the Ocean County GOP under Holman. Geoghegan is currently serving as president of the Toms River Township Council.
Art Gallagher, Mo’ Hill’s press secretary last week acknowledged that both he and Hill were aware of the spying, calling it fair game political vetting and opposition research.
According to Ocean County GOP Chairman George Gilmore, the spying on the Lamb family was done because the former power structure believed Justin Lamb was considering a run for mayor of Toms River against Hill in 2023.
Today, Lamb said he and his wife were targeted by McGuckin, Geohegan and Hill because they have publicly opposed their alleged corruption within the Toms River Township government.
Lamb said that he and his wife were targeted because they are calling out multiple public jobs that were given to Mo Hill’s close political allies.
“Around the same time as this P.I. report, I called out Mayor Hill publicly for running his administration like “Tammany Hall.” Hill hired his campaign manager Art Gallagher at $100K/year to begin work early on his re-election efforts on the taxpayer’s dime,” Lamb said. “And then Hill gave my predecessor Maria Maruca an ivory tower $100K/year confidential post just days after her removal from her politically appointed DMV job. Mo Hill’s Administration co-led by Assemblyman McGuckin can be summed up in 3 words…abuse of power.”
McGuckin, an assemblyman gave up his last bid to run for office in Toms River after it was made public that the IRS had placed liens against his home for unpaid income taxes.
According to the Observer, “Toms River Council President Greg McGuckin, the GOP candidate for Mayor, “has more than $120,000 in federal tax liens filed against him,” according to an Asbury Park Press report. “The liens totaling $121,913.87, are for unpaid individual income taxes from the years 2001, 2003, 2004 and 2005,” according to the news story. McGuckin faces Democrat Richard Strada, a former Mayor, and Carmine Inteso, a Republican Councilman running as an Independent.”
McGuckin officially ended up pulling out of that race. Today, he serves as Director of Public Law for the Township of Toms River and has at least 21 other public jobs earning over $1.7 million annually.
The status of McGuckin’s liens are unknown at this time.