Lorraine Shanley is accused of stealing more than $400,000 from a New York Police Department charity.
The widow of a police officer who was killed in the line of duty-who have served as volunteer treasurer for a charity intended to benefit the families of the other gender New York City police — stole $410,000 that they spent on the dental work, tuition fees, her son’s legal bills, and Barbra Streisand tickets, federal prosecutors allege.
During the seven years that Lorraine Shanley, 68, of Staten Island, a volunteer for the Survivors of the Shield, the group received $1.9 million in donations — mostly from employees of the New York Police Department. On average, 5,500 NYPD employees donated each year, a Ministry of Justice statement read.
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“As alleged in the indictment, Lorraine Shanley violated her position of trust in a charity and victim families who have already sacrificed so much,” said Jonathan D. Larsen, acting head of the IRS criminal investigation division. “IRS-CI is committed to following the money and examining the persons who steal from charities for their own personal gain.”
“IRS-CI is committed to following the money and examining the persons who steal from charities for their own personal gain.”
— Jonathan D. Larsen, acting head of the IRS criminal investigation division
Shanley gave Thursday to the federal prosecutors. She is confronted with fraud and aggravated identity theft charges.
The plaintiffs claim Shanley spent $29,000 for her grandchild private school fees, $63,000 for legal services with respect to the criminal prosecution against her son, and $32,000 for dental services and more than 1,400 dollars to see Barbra Streisand in concert.
She also allegedly wrote $45,000 in checks to family members and others, according to a criminal complaint.
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“They betrayed the trust of the organization,” Kathleen Vigiano, whose husband was a detective who died saving people from the World Trade Center on Sept. 11, 2001, told the New York Times. “We have widows who are already on a pension from the Sixties, and it is not so high. And that money would have gone to the kids’ education, the special needs of children, the students.”
If convicted, Shanley faces up to 30 years in prison.