A Berlin man allegedly ripped off his mother for $235,748.92, authorities said.

Randall Emerson Spoerlein, 56, of Stonecrest Drive, is in the Somerset County Jail after state police in Somerset said he stole the money from his 85-year-old mother when his trucking business failed.

Troopers said Spoerlein manipulated his mother into signing over annuities and an IRA when Spoerlein Trucking Express went belly up.

The alleged thefts took place between 2002 and 2008. A fraud investigation started in July 2008 after the woman reported that her son “misled her and tricked her out of money.”

The woman said she was shocked when she found out that money in the insurance annuities had been exhausted.

Troopers said Spoerlein also obtained several credit cards in his mother’s name without her knowledge.

Spoerlein allegedly used the credit cards to make cash withdrawals and unauthorized purchases, troopers said.

Spoerlein denied wrongdoing, troopers said. He said that his mother was making investments into his trucking company and that she knew where all the money was going.  

He was charged with 23 counts each of forgery and access device fraud and four counts each of theft by unlawful taking and theft by deception.

Spoerlein was arraigned by District Judge Arthur Cook of Somerset and jailed after failing to post $10,000 bond.


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