By Pat Loeb
PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — A South Jersey man is in federal custody after fleeing charges that he ripped off elderly nuns and their friends with a scam about a fake will.
Adriano Sotomayor of Cape May, New Jersey had been on the lam for more than three months before being nabbed in Las Vegas.
The indictment against him says the scam started three years ago, when he contacted an elderly nun from the Sisters of Fatima, in Puerto Rico, an order that tends to the poor and sick.
Karen Klotz, a federal prosecutor in Philadelphia, says Sotomayor pretended to be a priest with good news for the nun, “that she had been the beneficiary of a will worth approximately 2.1 million dollars, and that in order to collect on the will, she needed to send money to him in Atlantic City, New Jersey.”
Klotz says that over the next two years, Sotomayor invented a string of complications and legal challenges, and ultimately threatened a scandal over the fictitious will, convincing the nun to wire him a quarter of a million dollars — and then tried to get her to obtain more money from friends and acquaintances, including another nun of the same order who lived in Levittown, Pa.
Klotz says he fled the day after his indictment last November, but the FBI tracked him down in Las Vegas, where he awaits extradition back to Philadelphia.