Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Secretary Allegedly Embezzles $1 Million from Connecticut Law Firm

From the Connecticut Law Tribunal:

A former legal secretary at the Waterbury law firm of Grady & Riley has been charged with stealing more than $1 million and forging dozens of checks and documents.

Barbara Kalpin, of Southington, was a longtime and trusted employee at the firm, who spent about $500,000 over the last few years at an off-track betting venue in New Haven for
horse and dog racing, Waterbury police said. She wrote 93 checks from a client
fund that she managed, also using the money to pay credit card bills and to
finance multiple mortgages on her home.

Kalpin, who is facing two counts of first-degree larceny and 112 counts of second-degree forgery, and is awaiting arraignment next week.

Meanwhile, state Chief Disciplinary Counsel Patricia King said that the firm will be investigated. "Generally, lawyers have an obligation to supervise their staff. That's according to the Rules of Professional Conduct," King said. "At this point, I'm not in a position to say whether that duty was violated by this particular firm because I don't have all the information."

The firm's founder, Francis Grady, said that he self-reported the incident to the Statewide
Grievance Committee in May. "The grievance was filed by me," Grady
said. "We're sad that we've had a long-term employee embezzling money."

You can read more here.
I don’t know if the secretary here was bonded, but the lesson to make sure that
anyone who handles money is bonded. The media frequently reports embezzlements
from school boards, churches, and small businesses. This advice also applies to
any students and school administrators who handle money. For example, is your
SBA student treasurer bonded?


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