Suspended Priest Sentenced to 13 Years

LOUISA, Va. (AP) - A suspended Roman Catholic priest who
embezzled $432,000 from two rural parishes in Virginia has been
sentenced to 13 years in prison.

The Rev. Rodney Rodis will serve the state prison term after completing a five-year federal sentence.

At his state trial, Rodis said he stole the money to help his family and others in his native Philippines. But prosecutor Thomas Garrett said Rodis also invested in real estate.

The priest also supported a wife and three children whom he concealed from his parishioners.

Authorities said Rodis set up bank accounts and a post office box where he directed parishioners to send contributions. He then transferred the money to his personal account.

(Copyright 2009 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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