A Delaware priest faces charges in a New Castle County indictment alleging that he stole more than $300,000 from a parishioner.
62-year-old Reverend Michael Angeloni solicited money from the victim several times to pay certain expenses, when in fact the money was used for other purposes, according to Attorney General Beau Biden.
The nature of the expenditures was not disclosed.
Bishop Francis Malooly of the Catholic Diocese of Wilmington said in a statement that Father Angeloni came to him recently to reveal that he was the subject of a criminal investigation. Malooly placed Angeloni on administrative leave.
“The news of Father Angeloni’s indictment and the serious charges against him saddens me greatly,” Bishop Malooly said. “Our prayers are with him.”
Angeloni was an Assistant Pastor at Church of the Holy Child on Naamans Road north of Wilmington.
Biden said the Senior Protection Initiative in the AG’s office received a report in February from Wilmington Trust raising concerns about activity on the victim’s account. The alleged theft totaled $305,000.
“Crimes in which a person abuses a position of trust to financially prey on the victim are especially unconscionable,” Biden said.
The investigation is continuing, and Biden urged that anyone who may have been an additional victim to call the Senior Protection Initiative at 302-577-8508.
According to the Catholic Diocese of Wilmington, Angeloni was ordained in 1975 and served at several parishes in Newark, Hockessin, North Wilmington, Milford and Harrington.
Angeloni is the second Delaware priest to be charged with theft in recent months. Father Cornelius Breslin was charged earlier this year with stealing nearly $360,000 from two Wilmington churches where he served as pastor.