Former Los Gatos convent employee guilty of embezzling from nuns

Inside the convent

The following comes from an October 25 press release from the FBI.

A former employee for the Sisters of the Holy Names of Jesus and Mary Catholic Convent in Los Gatos, California, pled guilty in federal court this morning to 14 counts of wire fraud and three counts of mail fraud, United States Attorney Melinda Haag announced.

In pleading guilty, Linda Gomez (a/k/a Linda Surrett), 66, formerly of Sunnyvale, California, admitted that she used her administrative positions to embezzle cash and to charge personal expenses to a convent charge card.

According to the indictment, between 1987 and 2010, Gomez worked for the convent in various administrative capacities, including as the director of food services and the manager of an on-site convenience store. As part of her professional responsibilities, Gomez made purchases for the 75 Catholic nuns and 60 lay employees at the convent.

The indictment charges that between March 2008 and her resignation in May 2010, Gomez used various methods to embezzle from the convent, including obtaining fraudulent reimbursements or credits for products she falsely claimed she had purchased for the convent and its nuns. The indictment states that Gomez embezzled more than $100,000 from the convent.

In addition to embezzling more than $47,000 in cash, Gomez also diverted more than $53,000 of convent funds for personal expenses such as jewelry, high-end cutlery, purses, shoes, kitchen appliances, and numerous purchases on the QVC and Home Shopping Networks.

Gomez was charged in an indictment filed in San Jose federal district court on December 22, 2011. There is no plea agreement in the case. Gomez pled guilty to all 17 counts of wire and mail fraud charged in the indictment.

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  1. oh, great, stealing from the old nuns now!

    “the love of money is the root of all evil.”

  2. I’m pretty sure she’ll find forgiveness before her eyes even well with tears or her voice chokes with emotion that she just couldn’t help her ‘addiction’ and oh how she hated herself for spending all that money on luxuries that she couldn’t have afforded otherwise on her minuscule paycheck but she never minded because she so dearly loved all the wonderful folks at———- and if she could she’d pay back every cent!! Sob sob. What most of the women who have stolen from their charitable employers probably saw ( and there are sure a lot of them lately) was that no one was minding the store and what would be the harm. They may have rationalized that they were as poor as the next person , right? Or something very like. It would be best to have a healthy mistrust of human weakness and have strong safeguards and ways of checking on employees dealing with money securely in place . It’s just commonsense. Wise as serpents gentle
    as doves comes to mind. Those poor nuns! How sad! I hope they can see some of their money again.

  3. Kenneth M. Fisher says:

    Sad that in the picture you could not tell the Nuns from the laity by appearance!

    God bless, yours in Their Hearts,
    Kenneth M. Fisher

    • all nuns ARE laity, KENNETH.

      in the catholic world, people are divided into two categories:

      – the ordained (deacons, priests & bishops), and,
      – everyone else.

      nuns are not ordained, so they are part of the laity.

  4. Maybe she was seeking a retirement environment which was totally away from the sweet old ladies she’d been working for decades … I mean, working with.

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