Florida Woman Embezzles $1.5 Million from Her Vero Beach Church

Florida Man has been very busy lately, but Florida Woman is trying to catch up! Florida woman Deborah Lynn True, 69, was an administrator at the Holy Cross Catholic Church in Vero Beach from 2012 to 2020. Now she’s been arrested for embezzling $1.5 Million in Church funds!

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In 2012 True and the former Pastor Richard Murphy opened up a bogus business account in the name of Holy Cross Catholic Church. Investigators from the Vero Beach Police Department opened an investigation in October 2021 and say that True and Murphy skimmed approximately $1.5 Million dollars from congregant offerings between 2015 to 2020.

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True has been charged with embezzling approximately $550,000 dollars from the account to pay off personal lines of credit, and she once deposited $147,000 into her personal checking account. Investigators believe Murphy is responsible for stealing the rest, but since he passed away in 2020, there’s not much they can do about it. The bogus account was found when a new Pastor and bookkeeper took over after Murphy’s death

Vero Beach Police Chief David Currey had some choice words about the situation:

“You’re talking about a five-year period time. Where people have given their hard-earned money every week, for five years from 2015 to 2020 to the tune of about $1.5 million.” “It’s certainly disappointing that this has taken place. I used the word ‘trust’ because the trust was there. Hopefully, it still is, but it’s very hard to trust when something like this happens.”

True was arrested and transported to the Indian River County Jail, charged with one count of organized fraud over $50,000. She was later released after posting a $25,000 bond.


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