Shelton police help catch embezzler of $100,000

The Shelton Police Department played a role in catching a woman who has been convicted and sentenced for embezzling more than $100,000 from a dental practice.

Barbara O’Hara-Leone, 53, formerly of Norwalk, was sentenced Dec. 23 in Hartford federal court to 30 months of imprisonment, followed by three years of supervised release.

According to court documents and statements made in court, O’Hara-Leone worked as an office manager for a dental practice in Stamford until May 2012. While working there, she stole insurance checks issued to the victim and deposited them into her personal bank account, federal prosecutors said.

In addition, O’Hara-Leone submitted fraudulent claims to several insurance companies for work that was never completed in the names of existing dental patient patients, and then deposited the resulting insurance checks into her personal bank account, prosecutors said

Ordered to pay restitution

As part of those fraudulent claims, O’Hara-Leone used names, dates of birth, and Social Security numbers of the victim’s patients.

During the course of the scheme, O’Hara-Leone stole more than $100,000, according to court documents. The court ordered her to pay restitution in the amount of $100,980.

O’Hara-Leone has been detained since her arrest in North Carolina on April 23. On Oct. 4, she pleaded guilty to one count of wire fraud. The case was handled by U.S. District Judge Vanessa L. Bryant in Hartford federal court.

Many agencies aided investigation

The investigation was conducted by the Connecticut Financial Crimes Task Force, which includes members of the U.S. Secret Service, U.S. Postal Inspection Service, Internal Revenue Service’s Criminal Investigation Unit, Connecticut State Police, and the Shelton, Greenwich, Hartford, Monroe, Stamford, Stratford and Waterford police departments.

Deirdre M. Daly, U.S attorney for Connecticut, specifically recognized the efforts of the Greenwich and Stamford police departments for their assistance in the investigation and prosecution of the criminal matter.

The lead prosecutor was Assistant U.S. Attorney Douglas P. Morabito.