The owner of an Oceanside kickboxing gym accused of stealing customer’s credit card information to go on a shopping spree pleaded not guilty Thursday after being indicted on felony charges, Nassau County prosecutors said.
Thomas Donovan, 39, of Island Park, pleaded not guilty to a 10-count indictment that included charges of scheme to defraud, grand larceny, falsifying business records, criminal possession of a weapon and criminal possession of stolen property.
Police said Donovan, the owner of 5 Star Boxing in Oceanside, used his customers’ credit card information to make more than $30,000 in purchases from Home Depot stores across Long Island. Prosecutors said the victims had all signed up for fitness classes at Donovan’s gym and have tracked down three people they believe were targeted in November and December. Prosecutors are now reaching out to other customers and are “looking into allegations of additional unauthorized purchases using member cardholder credit cards in prior months,” a DA’s office spokesman said.
Prosecutors allege Donovan was working with another person in the scheme. That person was not identified by authorities and a spokesman for Acting Nassau County District Attorney Madeline Singas would not comment when asked whether that person was being sought for questioning or was cooperating with authorities.
Singas spokesman Paul Leonard said Donovan would go to the “Pro Desk” at Home Depot stores and used a fake name to create a contractor’s account. Donovan then allegedly added the credit card numbers of his customers to the account and then used the stolen card information to make purchases, Leonard said.
Prosecutors said the person Donovan was working with would visit the Home Depot locations in Nassau and Suffolk and bring various items to the contractors’ desk at the store, supplying the cashier with the fake name and phone number of a contractor. When Home Depot employees called the number, Donovan allegedly answered the phone, said he was the contractor, and then authorized the payments, the DA’s office said. Prosecutors said Donovan purchased more than $29,000 in merchandise from Nov. 17 to Dec. 9.
Donovan was arrested in December after police executed eight search warrants of his home, business and car. Cops said they found “an unlicensed defaced handgun” – identified in court papers as a .25 caliber pistol – and a “quantity of steroids.” Police also recovered some of the items purchased from Home Depot at Donovan’s home in Island Park and at his kickboxing gym, Leonard said.
At his arraignment Thursday afternoon, Nassau County Court Judge Meryl Berkowitz ordered Donovan held on $100,000 bail. He remained in custody Thursday evening and is due back in court on Feb. 10.
His attorney, Michael DerGarabedian, did not return a call seeking comment.