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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
District of Maryland

Tuesday, August 1, 2017

Former Pastor Of St. Mary’s County Church Sentenced To 18 Months Home Confinement For Federal Bank Fraud Charges


FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                                Contact ELIZABETH MORSE                                                         at (410) 209-4855


Greenbelt, Maryland – U.S. District Judge Deborah K. Chasanow sentenced John S. Mattingly, age 71, of Charlotte Hall, Maryland, to 3 years supervised release that includes 18 months of home confinement for bank fraud in connection with a scheme to steal funds from St. Francis Xavier Catholic Church, while he was the pastor. Judge Chasanow also ordered Mattingly to pay $400,000 in restitution, which Mattingly paid prior to the sentencing hearing.


The sentence was announced by Acting United States Attorney for the District of Maryland Stephen M. Schenning; Special Agent in Charge Gordon B. Johnson of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, St. Mary’s County Sheriff Tim Cameron, and St. Mary’s County State’s Attorney Richard Fritz.


According to his plea agreement, Mattingly was ordained as a Roman Catholic priest in 1972 and was the pastor of St. Francis Xavier Catholic Church (St. Francis), in Leonardtown, Maryland, from 1994 until September 1, 2010, when he resigned. While serving as a parish priest, Mattingly was paid a salary and stipend by St. Francis.


From September 2006 through September 2010, Mattingly fraudulently deposited checks from parishioners made payable to St. Francis and to the St. Vincent de Paul Society, which were intended by the St. Francis parishioners to be charitable donations, into a bank account he controlled. In order to conceal the scheme, Mattingly falsely represented that that the checks he deposited into his bank account would be used for charitable purposes and/or church maintenance and renovations. Mattingly did not use the charitable contributions from the St. Francis parishioners for their intended purposes, but instead transferred the fraudulently obtained funds from his bank account to his personal individual retirement account. He also wrote unauthorized checks from the St. Francis bank account payable to himself and deposited those checks into his personal individual retirement account.


Mattingly fraudulently deposited more than 500 checks, totaling at least $400,000, written by more than 135 parishioners and made payable to St. Francis or the St. Vincent de Paul Society, and not to Mattingly.


Acting United States Attorney Stephen M. Schenning commended the FBI, St. Mary’s County Sheriff’s Office, and St. Mary’s County State’s Attorney’s Office for their work in the investigation. Mr. Schenning thanked Assistant U.S. Attorney Bryan E. Foreman, who prosecuted the case.

Updated August 1, 2017