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Posted on: Might 26, 2021, 04:20h.
Final up to date on: Might 26, 2021, 04:41h.
Philip Conneller Learn Extra
The previous Metropolis Council president of Erie, Pennsylvania will serve a 12 months and a day in jail for plundering a charity she based, utilizing its funds to go playing.
Sonya Arrington arrives on the federal courthouse in Pittsburgh for her sentencing Monday. (Picture: Your Erie)
On Monday, a federal choose in Pittsburgh mentioned he was involved that Sonya Arrington had eroded public belief in authorities and charitable organizations. Senior United States District Choose David S. Cercone mentioned he needed to impose a sentence that promoted “respect for the legislation.”
Between 2012 and 2018, Arrington embezzled $70,000 from Moms In opposition to Teen Violence, which she largely blew on the tables of the Presque Isle Downs & On line casino within the metropolis.
She additionally fraudulently claimed practically $30,000 in Social Safety incapacity funds whereas in workplace.
Refused to Resign
Arrington was indicted in April 2018 on 33 felony counts that included 31 counts of wire fraud. However as a result of Pennsylvania legislation didn’t require her to resign, she remained council president, serving out her four-year time period, which expired in January 2020, whereas free on bond.
Prosecutors argued her refusal to resign, even after she had confessed to the FBI, was proof of a scarcity of regret.
Ms. Arrington handled her non-profit group prefer it was her private checking account,” mentioned FBI Pittsburgh Particular Agent in Cost Mike Nordwall. “Her greed and selfishness shortchanged the group’s efforts to assist stop teen violence.”
However Arrington apologized to Cercone by tears on Monday, insisting she “accepted accountability.”
Solace in Slots
Arrington based MATV following the deadly capturing of her 19-year-old son, Steve Arrington, in 2010.
She mentioned this, and the lack of her mom 4 years earlier, had induced her to hunt solace in slot machines.
It was a peace,” Arrington mentioned, as reported by Go Erie. “I didn’t must hearken to anybody — all I needed to do was push a button.”
She additionally used the cash to pay for a household journey to Disney World and different private bills, equivalent to clothes, groceries, eating places, and paying payments.
Feds Tipped Off
The US Legal professional’s Workplace mentioned in a press release it had been tipped off about doable monetary irregularities at MATV by a financial institution worker. The worker noticed ATM withdrawals on the Presque Isle from accounts managed by the nonprofit.
Final October, Arrington pleaded responsible to at least one depend of wire fraud and one depend of falsely claiming Social Safety.
On Monday, Choose Cercone ordered her to obtain therapy for a playing habit and serve two years of supervised launch as soon as she will get out of jail. The day added to her one-year jail sentence makes her eligible to be launched early for good habits.
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