Philadelphia Criminal Law News

Ex-Court Employee To Pay Back $433K in Stolen Funds

This crime story comes out of Philadelphia courts. But it’s actually the courts that are involved in a crime.

Rather, it’s the court that was the victim in this tale of theft.

William Rullo, a veteran Philadelphia court procurement worker, was found to be stealing funds from the courts, reports The Philadelphia Inquirer.

During his 10-year tenure at the courthouse, he allegedly stole $433,000 in court funds.

Rullo received a 33 month prison sentence — the minimum under the sentencing guidelines. He will also have to repay the money he stole.

All $433,000 of it.

While the judge believed that Rullo was genuinely remorseful for stealing the funds, he claimed that he had to impose the minimum sentence. He also cited public policy as a reason for imposing the sentence, saying that, as a judge, he had to deter others from engaging in public corruption.

While Rullo’s charges involved the taking of funds, he pleaded guilty to mail fraud.

Mail fraud and wire fraud are two similar concepts, essentially involving a fraud that took place over the mail, or in the case of wire fraud, over “wires,” namely telephone, Internet or other means.

In his role as procurement officer, Rullo would order products and services for the courts with a court credit card in his name. He also used the court credit card to buy cell phones for his family and friends. He even bought parking passes, which he resold to his friends and coworkers, The Inquirer states.

And then there were the personal indulgences. He bought a plasma television and had weekends away at resorts with court money.

According to Phillyburbs.com, the case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and the Philadelphia Police Department.

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