ROCKLEDGE, FL (WESH) — New details have emerged in the case of a Florida priest accused of defrauding an elderly widow out of more than $88,000.
An arrest warrant claims the pastor, Father Nicholas King, approached a member of St. Mary’s Catholic Church with a plan.
“King arranged with the victim to be given pre-signed blank checks drawn from her account,” the report said.
The warrant said that the widow had set up a bank account at Regions Bank to benefit the church, but King used the funds on himself instead.
The warrant said that, at the same time, King was dining expensively at places such as Austin’s Chop House, to the tune of more than $500, and buying candy at Grimaldi’s, worth more than $900. He also bought a $42,000 car.
While he was spending exhorborant amounts of money, the church’s coffers were drying up. The lack of funds left the church unable to support its school.
“We are out of money…We cannot pay the school any of the wages we owe for the prior six months,” the church bookkeeper wrote.
The widow was unaware of the situation for months until her account was overdrawn. According to WESH, she reported it to church officials, who in turn went to the police.
The Diocese has ousted King from the ministry and he has since been charged with fraud and grand theft.
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