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Delaware Priest Admits Stealing From Parishes

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WILMINGTON, Del. (AP) — A Catholic priest has pleaded guilty to felony theft after being charged with embezzling more than $350,000 from two parishes of the Catholic Diocese of Wilmington.

The Rev. Cornelius Breslin entered the plea in New Castle County Superior Court on Wednesday, the same day he was to go to trial on charges of stealing from St. Patrick and St. Mary of the Immaculate Conception parishes.

The 59-year-old Breslin pleaded guilty to one count of felony theft over $100,000. Prosecutors agreed to drop a second theft count and two counts of falsifying business records.

Breslin will be sentenced Sept. 23, following a presentencing investigation. Sentencing guidelines call for up to one year in prison.

Breslin was indicted in February after diocesan officials reported suspicious financial activity to the attorney general’s office.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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