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Scranton Diocese employee accused of $340,000 theft

on October 04, 2013 10:20 AM

SCRANTON (AP) — A longtime employee of the Diocese of Scranton is charged with stealing more than $340,000 from a fund that was meant for the poor.

Lackawanna County prosecutors said Sharon Warunek, 66, was an office worker in charge of charitable donations for Roman Catholic missions that help the poor but used those donations as her personal bank account.

The 27-year employee of the diocese has been charged with felony theft. Investigators said she used the donation money to pay credit card bills.

She is free on $25,000 unsecured bail pending a preliminary hearing Nov. 20. She didn’t comment outside court Thursday.

The bishop of the Diocese of Scranton said it’s a “sad reality” that people exploit the system but he vowed to remain vigilant in overseeing resources entrusted to the church.

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