Delco Tax Collector Accused Of Stealing More Than $1.3 Million - KMSP-TV

Delco Tax Collector Accused Of Stealing More Than $1.3 Million

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ALDAN BOROUGH, Pa. -

A Delaware County tax collector is accused of stealing more than one million dollars from the people he served for two decades. The stealing of tax money has allegedly been happening for a decade. It was only in the last two years, when investigators say, he started losing the money and that's when he ran into trouble.

77-year-old Robert Park left court today after prosecutors say he admitted that he stole more than a million dollars from tax payers like Bill Bastian.

"If he was stealing our money, I'm glad he got arrested," says Bill Bastian of Aldan.

Park was the tax collector for Aldan Borough and the William Penn School District in Lansdowne for 20 years. Delaware County prosecutors tell us that for the last decade, he took that money and invested it in the stock market illegally.

"For his own personal use with the hope he could play the money and make money and then take that money and put it in his own account and pay the district back, but it went horribly wrong," says Jack Whelan, the Delaware County District Attorney.

School district leaders we talked to couldn't believe the news.

"We were stunned. He was thorough. Seemed like a good outstanding gentleman," says Joe Otto, the Chief Operating Officer of the William Penn School District.

Investigators explain that park was having financial problems.

"there was some evidence he was going to utilize the money for his wife who passed away and for his own retirement," says DA Jack Whelan.

We tried to get some answers from park, but no one came to the door at his home.

Arthur Donato, Park's Defense Attorney, did give a few words when they were leaving court.

"Mr. Park will ultimately accept responsibility for his conduct in court and put this matter behind him," he told FOX 29.

Park is out on $250,000 unsecured bond.

"He stole over a million dollars. Bail should be at a million," remarked Bill Bastian.

Park is facing several theft charges and ethical violations. The good news is that this does not effect any school children or residents here in Aldan. The school district and borough are insured.

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