SAUGUS (CBS) – A former library employee in Saugus is charged with stealing more than $800,000 from the library.
Police say that beginning in 2004, Linda Duffy set up a bank account at Eastern Bank under the name “Saugus Public Library.”
Instead of depositing charitable donations and checks intended to pay library fees into the library’s actual account, police say Duffy would put the money into her decoy “Saugus Public Library” account before transferring the money into her personal account.
Read the entire indictment (.pdf)
Officials say she used the cash for personal expenses, including jewelry, home repairs, car payments, and her home mortgage among other things.
WBZ-TV’s Karen Anderson reports
Saugus Town Manager Andrew Bisignani says the town is stunned and disappointed and that the library really could have used that stolen money.
“The library has had a very difficult history the last several years because of funding,” he told WBZ-TV’s Karen Anderson. “We lost our certification for a period of time, we regained that certification by accumulating funds and taking resources from other departments so we could keep the library opened and certified. We are now operating at minimum standards and it’s been a struggle because we do have some financial difficulties with public education, public safety, public works. “
According to the indictment, 65-year-old Duffy managed to accumulate nearly half of that money by deceiving the GE Foundation.
The foundation matches employees’ and former employees’ charitable donations.
Duffy is accused of deceiving GE Foundation into matching $400,000 worth of fake donations.
Duffy’s alleged scheme ended in July of 2011 when she abruptly resigned.
WBZ NewsRadio 1030′s Carl Stevens reports
Duffy faces four counts of mail fraud, 10 counts of money laundering and one count of aggravated identity theft.
If convicted, she could face 22 years in prison and more than a million dollars in fines.