Priest sentenced to three years for theft from his Las Vegas parish

by Tom Gallagher

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According to the Associated Press:

A Roman Catholic priest was sentenced Friday to three years and one month in federal prison and ordered to repay $650,000 he acknowledged siphoning from his northwest Las Vegas parish to support his gambling habit.

Muffled sobs erupted from a courtroom packed with supporters, but Monsignor Kevin McAuliffe, 59, stood straight and made no reaction as U.S. District Court Judge James Mahan faulted him for accepting responsibility but "hedging his bet" by blaming the theft on a gambling addiction.

"You abused a position of trust, Mr. McAuliffe, the judge said, dispensing with any church title for the priest who many in the parish referred to as Father Kevin while he hid a weakness for casinos and video poker. "You betrayed people who depended on you."

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