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Lawyer Calls Bookkeeper Brother ‘Diabolical’ for Alleged Embezzlement

Posted Nov 13, 2007 8:43 AM CDT
By Debra Cassens Weiss

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A partner at a Garden City, N.Y., law firm says there was no reason to suspect his brother was embezzling.

Bookkeeper Anthony Galasso has been accused of taking $4.3 million from an escrow account at Galasso Langione & Botter over a two-and-a-half year period, the New York Law Journal reports. He has been charged with grand larceny and is facing a lawsuit from the firm.

Partner Peter Galasso told the legal publication that his brother’s alleged conduct was “diabolical.” Anthony Galasso "was able to hide his secretive machinations by diverting bank mail to a post office box, and then giving us fabricated, authentic-looking bank statements," Peter Galasso alleged. "Until his confession to no less than four members of the firm, there was never a reason presented to be suspicious."

Prosecutors contend Anthony Galasso spent embezzled money on vacations to Atlantic City casinos, the Ritz Carlton in New York and Disney World. They also allege he used the money to buy a Mercedes Benz, pay his son's tuition at New York University Law School, and buy $200,000 in tickets to concerts and sporting events.

Galasso has pleaded not guilty to the charges. He claims in his answer to the suit that the firm partners had a duty to monitor escrow accounts and are liable for contributory negligence.

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