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Priest Accused Of Stealing $500K For Gambling

Philly Religious Figure In Hot Water With Government

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A prominent religious figure in Philadelphia is accused of embezzling more than $500,000 from the Catholic Church to fund a lavish lifestyle that included trips to local casinos.

The federal government said earlier this month that Msgr. William Dombrow, 77, went gambling at Harrah’s Casino in Chester with money that was for a home for retired priests.

Dombrow was in charge of the home’s finances.

The government said that the scheme went on for nearly nine years until the bank became suspicious of some transactions and alerted the Archdiocese of Philadelphia.

According to Philly.com, Dombrow was charged with four counts of wire fraud by way of a criminal information. If convicted, he could face 80 years in prison.

His attorney said that Dombrow is “ashamed to have shed such a bad light on the Archdiocese.”

Dombrow’s case isn’t the first of its kind.

In 2014, a priest in Ottawa was sentenced to a year in prison after admitting to stealing $130,000 from the church to fund his gambling addiction.

In 2015, a Roman Catholic priest in Massachusetts was given five years of probation for stealing a sum of $240,000 to feed his years-long gambling habit.

Catholic nuns and Buddhist monks have also been charged with stealing money to fund casino trips.