A former Middletown mayor has been arrested, accused of embezzling almost $1 million from his former employer as well as a family member.
Police said 67-year-old Stephen T. Gionfriddo, of Middletown, is accused of embezzling approximately $490,000 from a Rocky Hill law firm he worked for, then stealing $457,000 from a family member to pay the law firm back.
Gionfriddo was arrested Tuesday and charged him with wire fraud and released on a $200,000 bond.
In 2006, Gionfriddo was convicted of mail fraud and wire fraud for embezzling more than $633,000 from clients while he was acting as their attorney, according to the federal officials, and he was disbarred.
Gionfriddo is accused of making bogus requisitions for approximately $377,895 in checks from the law firm between December 2013 and September 2017, purportedly to pay client expenses, but he used the funds for his personal use, according to the U.S. Department of Justice.
Gionfriddo is also accused of forging the signature of one of the firm’s partners to convert a certificate of deposit for $112,748.21 to a check. In all, he is accused of stealing $490,648.88 from the law firm.
When principals of the law firm confronted him, in September 2017, Gionfriddo promised to repay the firm and took $45,000 from a family member’s checking account and approximately $217,000 from an online trading account and impersonated family, causing a hardship withdrawal of $195,000 to be made against his family member’s contribution plan, federal authorities said.
Gionfriddo served as the mayor of Middletown for six months in 1993, according to the Associated Press.