New Jersey

Owners Who Burned Down Diner for Insurance Get Probation

The owners of a New Jersey diner who burned it down to collect insurance money have been spared prison terms.

Tina Diakos, 49, and Ozkan Cengiz, 40, were both sentenced to five years of probation on Friday. They had each pleaded guilty to arson charges in March.

The pair decided to burn down the Jerzeez Diner in Vernon because it wasn't doing well and they were also facing the cost of replacing its septic system, Sussex County prosecutors said. So they drove from their home in Butler and set the diner on fire in March 2016.

No one was injured in the fire.

Besides their probation sentences, Diakos and Cengiz were also ordered to pay $323,000 overall in restitution and perform community service.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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