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Charity Director Sentenced for Fraud

When US District Court judge Sara Ellis sentenced Stuart Nitzkin to more than three years in prison, she noted that the case essentially boiled down to a man beset by greed, trying to live a life he couldn’t afford.

Nitzkin, 45, pleaded guilty to one count of wire fraud stemming from his financial mismanagement of American Friends of the Israel Sport Center for the Disabled, where he served as executive director. Despite earning an annual salary of $150,000 for his duties as a networking fundraiser, Nitzkin stole more than $800,000 from the organization over a five-year period, and used it to purchase lavish goods, services, and experiences.

Assistant US Attorney Sheri Mecklenburg wrote, “The money raised by the charity paid not just for sporting events for the children, but also for wheelchairs, therapeutic pools and other rehabilitative equipment. Nitzkin repeatedly has said that he would ‘never hurt the kids,’ but that is exactly what he did.”

Mecklenburg went on to contrast the fortunes of the charity and Nitzkin. While it was struggling he was thriving, with real estate in four different states and a net worth of millions.

As part of his sentencing, Nitzkin was ordered to pay $516,000 in restitution.

Possible Preaching Angle:

Those who misuse money entrusted to them violate God's desire for integrity. Leaders who fail publicly don't just dishonor themselves and their families, but erode trust and goodwill in the community.

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