The former business manager of a Cheektowaga church is charged with second-degree
grand larceny for allegedly stealing more than $400,000 dollars to pay off gambling debts.
Randall Kozlowski of Buffalo confessed to stealing the money over a period of several years from Our Lady Help of Christians Catholic Church in Cheektowaga, where
Erie County District Attorney Frank Clark says Kozlowski was writing checks to himself, and the alleged thefts went undetected for so long because Kozlowski was in charge of all the church's financial affairs.
Kozlowski was jailed in lieu of $500,000 dollars bail and could face up to 15 years in prison if convicted.
The District Attorney says this case is just the latest in a series of church embezzlements. In the last five years, more than $1,000,000 has been embezzeled from local Catholic Churches. "There has to be a change in the way they do business. They just can't keep doing business the same way and expect this not to keep happening," said Clark.