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Clerk charged with swiping $1M from NY archdiocese

Clerk charged with stealing $1M from NY archdiocese, had 1999 grand larceny conviction By The Associated Press

NEW YORK (AP) ' An Archdiocese of New York clerk has been arrested on charges of manipulating the church's accounts payable system to steal more than $1 million in education money.

Archdiocese spokesman Joseph Zwilling said Monday that Anita Collins wrote checks to herself or a relative but recorded them as payments to legitimate vendors.

The archdiocese says its staff and outside auditors spotted the theft and alerted prosecutors.

Collins has a prior grand larceny conviction from 1999. She was sentenced to community service and five years' probation.

Zwilling says pre-employment background checks for all employees began shortly after Collins was hired in 2003. She was fired in December.

Her lawyer's name wasn't available. No working phone number could be found for her Bronx home.

The New York Times first reported Collins' arrest.

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