Los Angeles Nun Sentenced To Prison After Stealing MORE Than $800k To Support Gambling Addiction!
This is definitely NOT what Jesus would do!
On Monday, Sister Mary Margaret Kreuper was sentenced to 12 months and one day in federal prison after pleading guilty to federal wire fraud and money laundering charges, per CBSLA. The nun acknowledged in her plea agreement that she had embezzled $835,339 over the course of ten years while she was principal of St. James Catholic School. The judge also ordered Kreuper to pay back that amount in restitution.
As principal, the 80-year-old had access to money meant for the school’s tuition and fees, as well as charitable donations. She also controlled the school’s savings account as well as an account dedicated to the living expenses of her fellow nuns (who swore a vow of poverty). CBSLA reported that Kreuper diverted embezzled funds to secret accounts in order “to pay for expenses that the order would not have approved, much less paid for,” including large gambling expenses and trips to Las Vegas, Lake Tahoe and Temecula, according to her plea agreement. She later directed St. James employees to destroy documents that might have exposed her misconduct in an audit.
According to ABC 7, the nun’s defense attorneys claimed that “As soon as she was confronted, she accepted full responsibility for what she had done and she has cooperated fully with law enforcement and the Archdiocese.” However, the LA Times reported that when confronted by the Archdiocese of Los Angeles, Kreuper “argued that priests are better paid than nuns, and said she believed she deserved a raise.”
Her lawyers also argued that she suffered “from mental illness that clouded her judgment and caused her to do something that she otherwise would not have done,” and cited an expert report that found Kreuper had a gambling addiction.
At the sentencing, Sister Mary Margaret gave a statement saying:
“I have sinned, I’ve broken the law and I have no excuses. My actions were in violation of my vows, my commandments, the law and, above all, the sacred trust that so many had placed in me. I was wrong and I’m profoundly sorry for the pain and suffering I’ve caused so many people.”
Per the Times, she promised to to follow “more closely in Christ’s footsteps,” adding:
“I was wrong, and I am profoundly sorry for the pain and the suffering that I have caused so many people. I apologize for the public scandal, the embarrassment and the financial burden that I have placed on the sisters in my religious community, the Archdiocese of Los Angeles, St. James School, the parishioners, parents and students who placed their trust in me.”
Prosecutors actually recommended a 24-month prison sentence, three years of supervised release, and restitution for the nun’s sentence. But God must have been looking out for Mary Margaret, because U.S. District Judge Otis D. Wright II happened to be Catholic himself and admitted he “was educated by nuns,” per the LA Times.
At the sentencing, he praised her ability as a teacher but said she “ran completely off the road.” However, he refused to judge her based solely on “the worst thing that she’s done in her life,” therefore granting a more lenient sentence than had been recommended. Seems her God is a merciful God after all!
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