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FBI Nabs Fugitive Charged With Scamming Nuns

February 27, 2012


PHILADELPHIA - Adriano Sotomayor, 54, of Margate, New Jersey, was captured today in Las Vegas, Nevada, by the FBI Fugitive Squad, announced United States Attorney Zane David Memeger. Sotomayor is a defendant in a 13-count wire fraud indictment returned by a federal grand jury in Philadelphia. He has been a fugitive since November 16, 2011, one day after he was charged with 13 counts of wire fraud. The indictment alleges that defendant Sotomayor defrauded members of the Dominican Sisters of the Rosary of Fatima (“Sisters of Fatima”), and others, between May 2009 and June 2011.

According to the indictment, the defendant launched his scheme by causing an elderly nun to believe that she had been named in a will as the beneficiary of an estate estimated at approximately $2.1 million. In order to lure the elderly nun into this scheme, the defendant caused his victim to believe that the man who notified her about the will was a Catholic priest from New Jersey, and the testator was one of his parishioners.

The indictment contends that the defendant fraudulently induced the elderly nun to begin sending money to him in Atlantic City, New Jersey, by telling her that she needed to pay taxes, processing fees, and various legal fees associated with the fictitious will. According to the indictment, the defendant went on to target other victims in Levittown and Philadelphia who initially sent money to the defendant on the elderly nun’s behalf. According to the indictment, the defendant caused at least 24 victims to send a total of at least $439,153 from Pennsylvania and elsewhere to him in New Jersey over a two year period. The defendant received wire transfers at the Trump Plaza Hotel and Casino, the Showboat Hotel and Casino, and Bally’s Park Place, among other places.

If convicted the defendant faces a maximum possible sentence of 260 years’ imprisonment, a $3.25 million fine, three years of supervised release, and a $1,300 special assessment.

The case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Karen M. Klotz.

Suite 1250, 615 Chestnut Street, Philadelphia, PA 19106
PATTY HARTMAN, Media Contact, 215-861-8525


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