Feds: Monsignor embezzled $500K from retirement home for aging priests

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The rector of an Archdiocesan retirement home for aging priests was charged Wednesday with embezzling more than a half million dollars from the facility to cover his tastes for fancy dinners, Philadelphia Pops concerts, and local casinos.


Federal prosecutors accused Msgr. William A. Dombrow, 77, of siphoning funds for nearly nine years from a private account set up to support the Villa St. Joseph, the facility in Darby that also houses priests that have been accused of sexual abuse.

 Much of the money that flowed into that account came from the life insurance payouts of priests who had died while residing there or bequests from the estates of parishioners who intended to support the facility.


The theft was discovered, Assistant U.S. Attorney Michelle Rotella said, after the bank which administered the account flagged several suspicious payments and deductions at Harrah’s Casino in Chester and notified the Archdiocese of Philadelphia.





“He was the one who had sole access to this account and misappropriated the funds for his personal use,” Rotella said. “He used it to fund a more lavish lifestyle for himself.”

Dombrow could not be reached for comment Wednesday. His lawyer, Coley O. Reynolds,  did not return calls.

The monsignor was charged with four counts of wire fraud by way of a criminal information instead of an indictment – a sign that typically means a defendant has already agreed to plead guilty.

Dombrow is a recovering alcoholic that led who devoted his time to helping other priests with struggles with alcohol. He previously led the Archdiocesan Priests’ Committee on Alcoholism and a treatment center.
























1 Philadelphia

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