Prosecutors: Md. priest deposited $76K for donations into personal account

WASHINGTON — A former St. Mary’s County priest has been indicted on bank fraud charges after authorities say he deposited $76,000 worth of checks that had been donated to the church’s “poor box” into his personal bank account and used the funds to pad his retirement account.

Last week, a federal grand jury indicted John S. Mattingly — a 70-year-old of Charlotte Hall, Maryland — on 20 counts of bank fraud. The indictment was unsealed Sept. 1.

Prosecutors said Mattingly, who served as the pastor of St. Francis Xavier Catholic Church in Leonardtown, Maryland, fraudulently deposited more than 500 checks totaling $76,000 between 2006 and 2010. The checks were intended to be donations to the church or to the St. Vincent de Paul Society charity, according to the indictment.

Prosecutors also said Mattlingly wrote unauthorized checks from the church’s bank account to himself to deposit into his individual retirement account.

Mattingly, who has been an ordained priest since 1972, served as the parish priest between 1994 and 2010 when he resigned. Mattingly made an initial appearance last week in U.S. District Court in Greenbelt, Maryland.

Mattingly faces a maximum sentence of 30 years in prison for each of the 20 counts of bank fraud.

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