Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Tennessee Mother & Son Charged With Bilking Church $1.5 Million

Barbara D. Whitt, 68, and her son Michael Dean Whitt, 42, both of Morristown, Tennessee, were charged with misappropriating more than $1.5 million from the First Baptist Church in Morristown where she had served as church financial secretary for 47 years. According to authorities, Barbara Whitt issued at least 1,650 checks made out to "cash" pocketing the funds. The thefts are believed to have spanned a period of more than 2 years, from January 2008 until April 2010. Michael Whitt is alleged to have participated in the fraud and benefitted from the ill-gotten proceeds.

Read the story here, here and here.

Update (2/15/11): Barbara Whitt and her son, Michael Whitt, pleaded guilty to charges they embezzled more than $1.5 million from teh First Baptist Church in Morristown. Barbara Whitt pleaded guilty to bank fraud and money laundering and Michael Whitt pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit bank fraud and conspiracy to launder money.

Update (9/2/11): Whitt, now 70, was sentenced to 44 months in prison.

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