Two longtime nuns at St. James Catholic School in Torrance allegedly embezzled as much as $500,000 in tuition, fees and donations, perhaps spending some of the money on trips and gambling at casinos while telling parents the school was operating on a shoestring budget, it was reported Thursday. The figure represents only what auditors have been able to trace in six years’ of bank records and might not include other cash transactions, officials from the Archdiocese of Los Angeles told parents and alumni at a meeting Monday night at St. James Catholic Church in Redondo Beach, the Long Beach Press-Telegram reported. That’s when Kreuper became “very nervous and very anxious” about the upcoming financial review and requested that the staff alter records, the monsignor said. Meyers said he alerted an archdiocese internal auditor performing the review that “something was off” and that the auditor confirmed his suspicions. The archdiocese then hired an independent forensic auditor for a deeper review. Without the red flags raised by the check, Kreuper’s “strange” behavior and a tip made to an archdiocese ethics hotline, officials said the school would never have known about the problem.
A man has been jailed after conning his friends and colleagues out of more than £1 million by convincing them to invest in a fake ‘horse feed’ business. Branko Sevic, 47 of Blays Lane, Englefield Gree, was sentenced to five years, seven months in prison at Guildford Crown Court on Wednesday (December 5). Sevic had left his home each morning telling his family that he was running a business. However bank statements show that he frequented coffee shops where he would access Wi-Fi and spend tens of thousands of pounds on online gambling sites and designer clothing instead. During their investigation police found that Sevic had admitted to two of his victims and also during a police interview that the business did not exist and that there was no money left. According to Surrey Police, Sevic was given a higher sentence due to the heart wrenching victim personal statements read to the court, revealing in detail the devastating impact his crimes had on the victims’ families. Investigating officer, PC Garvanovic of the Staines Local Proactive Unit, said: “Sevic’s damning bank statements reveal the true extent of his fraudulent activity. Over the past five years, he has exploited former work colleagues and friends, encouraging them to invest in his Ponzi scheme which was fronted by a fake business.”
Authorities on Thursday arrested a suspect accused of shooting a 57-year-old sports agent in what is believed to be a gambling dispute last week on the West Side. Raashon Fontelroy, 25, was charged with murder in connection to the death of LaPoe Smith Jr., who was known for representing professional basketball and football players. Fontelroy was arrested by members of the Lone Star Fugitive Task Force at about 11 a.m. at his apartment in the 1500 block of NW Crossroads, the location of the alleged killing on Nov. 30. Fontelroy, Smith and others are believed to have been partying and throwing dice at Fontelroy’s apartment prior to the shooting. Ofc. Doug Greene, a spokesman for the department, said money was going back and forth between the players, but at some point, Smith decided to walk away. He went to his car in the parking lot, where he was allegedly confronted by an angry Fontelroy. “Mr. Fontelroy may have been upset about the money that he may have lost during that interaction in the apartment complex,” Greene said. Smith tried to flee in his vehicle, but Fontelroy allegedly opened fire, striking him. Smith was able to drive about a block away before he crashed near Potranco and Culebra and was ejected from his vehicle.
A Campbellsville man pleaded guilty before the United States District Court on Friday to five counts of wire fraud. Officials say this was part of a scheme to obtain money from clients of his legal practice, by means of misappropriating funds, in order to pay personal expenses including gambling losses. Danny Butler, 72, was indicted Nov. 15. According to the indictment, Butler was a licensed attorney. He operated a legal practice in Greensburg and provided clients with a broad range of legal services including probate, general civil, and government benefits. According to the plea agreement before the court, from August 2009 through October 2016, Butler obtained money by false pretenses from the clients of his legal practice by not performing work for his clients and by stealing funds belonging to estates of his clients. Butler could be sentenced to a maximum 100 years in prison, fined $1,250,000, and be required to serve a three year period of supervised release. Sentencing is scheduled for March 4, 2019.
A 62-year-old man was shot and killed at a home in south Orlando on Sunday evening, the Orange County Sheriff’s Office said. Deputies found the man, whom they have not identified, with a gunshot wound to the chest around 6 p.m. at 1456 35th St. The suspect, a 37-year-old man, was located at the scene and “secured,” deputies said. Firefighters transported the victim to Orlando Regional Medical Center, where he died. Investigators said the fatal shooting started as a fight during a night of gambling at the home. Video of the scene shows chips scattered across a table. Neighbors said gambling nights happen at the home often, but that they’ve never turned violent before. The investigation is still active.
A suspended Nevada personal injury attorney is jailed in Las Vegas following his arrest in what police say is the theft of about $1.8 million from client financial settlements. Records show that Matthew Dunkley was arrested Sunday pending an initial court appearance on 39 felony theft charges. His bail was set at $117,000. Attorney William Terry represents the 53-year-old Dunkley in his Nevada State Bar suspension. Terry said Tuesday that Dunkley had a gambling addiction. Terry says he wasn’t immediately retained for Dunkley’s criminal defense. Las Vegas police allege that Dunkley siphoned money from client insurance settlements since 2012, including medical treatment payments for a 5-year-old child who had been attacked by a dog. Attorney Jared Richards says his firm, Clear Counsel Law Group, represents some of Dunkley’s former clients.
For more information on the dangers of gambling, please visit CASINO WATCH & CASINO WATCH FOUNDATION