BOSTON - A Saugus woman was sentenced today for a scheme to steal charitable donations and other funds intended for a local library where she worked
Linda E. Duffy, 66, was sentenced by U.S. District Judge Douglas P. Woodlock to five years in prison, to be followed by three years of supervised release and to pay $965,742 in restitution. In December 2011, Duffy pleaded guilty to four counts of mail fraud, 10 counts of money laundering, and aggravated identity theft.
Beginning around 2004 through 2011, Duffy, who was employed by the Saugus Public Library, diverted funds received for charitable donations and payment of fines from an account in the name of the library to a decoy bank account. She then transferred the funds from the decoy account to her personal account at the same bank. Duffy used the money for personal expenses, including jewelry, home repairs, automotive payments, and her home mortgage payments. She deposited some of the funds into an account in her daughter's name. Duffy also stole funds from a second library account by forging a library official’s signature on about 90 checks.
To boost the funds in the library account, Duffy also deceived the GE Foundation. Since the GE Foundation matches charitable donations by current and former GE employees and their spouses, Duffy posed as the relative of a GE employee, thus deceiving the Foundation into donating over $400,000 to the library to match non-existent donations. Duffy deposited these funds into the decoy account before later transferring them to her own account.
Between 2004 and 2011, Duffy transferred over $850,000 to the decoy account in library donations, fines, fees, and the funds obtained from defrauding the GE Foundation. Duffy was forced to resign in July 2011.
United States Attorney Carmen M. Ortiz and Richard DesLauriers, Special Agent in Charge of the Federal Bureau of Investigation Boston Field Division, made the announcement today. The Saugus Police Department also assisted with the investigation. The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Andrew E. Lelling of Ortiz’s Economic Crimes Unit.